Drug & Alcohol Survey Presentation:
To: WPS Parents and Families
From: William S. McKersie, Ph.D.
RE: Invitation to Drug & Alcohol Survey Presentation – October 26, 2017 (7:00 p.m.)
Fostering a Healthy Learning Environment has been a priority goal for the Weston Public Schools for several years. The use of drugs and alcohol by our students is a critical concern. In Spring 2017, we established the Drug & Alcohol Initiative to help students make healthy choices and decisions.
On Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 7:00 p.m., the Weston PTO is hosting a program for WPS administrators and Positive Directions to present findings from the 2017 Weston Youth & Parent Survey Report (May 2017) on drug and alcohol use and associated wellness issues in Weston. We will meet at Weston Middle School in the Library Media Center.
The 2017 Weston Survey is the fourth such study conducted since 2000 in Weston by Positive Directions. We now have a good set of longitudinal data and analysis. Moreover, Positive Directions is able to provide comparisons to national data and information through the Monitoring the Future Surveys (2012 and 2016).
The 2017 Weston Survey documents that the majority of our students make healthy choices during their tenure in the Weston Public Schools. Unfortunately, the survey verifies that far too many of our students regularly (based on a 30 day measure) use alcohol and marijuana, and at an increasing rate as they move through their high school years. The report also documents that Weston’s incidence rates are greater than the national survey data. The report may be accessed at the following link: 2017 Drug and Alcohol Survey Results.
At the core of the Drug & Alcohol Initiative is a Task Force, led by Lisa Deorio and Dan Doak. The Task Force is the operational body for the Initiative and includes administrators, teachers, counselors, mental health professionals, the School Resource Officer and student leaders. Lisa and Dan will discuss the latest Task Force Work Plan as part of the October 26 program.
We also have established a Drug & Alcohol Advisory Committee, which is charged with connecting the Initiative to the town and wider community. A key role will be to hear updates from the Task Force and provide guidance on priority work and community partnerships. The Advisory Committee represents the Board of Education, Town of Weston officials, parents, alumni, mental health professionals, youth workers, faith leaders and community members.
I hope many of you will attend the October 26 presentation at Weston Middle School. Thank you for your attention to this vital matter.