Drug use among area students decreasing

SNOQUALMIE VALLEY - A statewide study of drug use by children showed that use among students in the Snoqualmie Valley School District has decreased.

The results were part of a study presented to parents, educators and community members at a Snoqualmie Valley community forum held at Chief Kanim Middle School earlier this month.

The numbers for children in the Snoqualmie Valley and Riverview school districts were pulled from a survey the state's Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction takes every two years. The survey is given to sixth-, eighth-, 10th- and 12th-grade students, but data from the 12th-graders had to be omitted due to low participation.

Kevin Haggerty, who works for the Social Development Research Group at the University of Washington, presented the information and said the trends for the district are mostly encouraging. Alcohol, cigarette and drug use in all grades has decreased in the past few years and continued to drop with the most recent figures. Alcohol use has dropped more than 10 percent for both eighth- and 10th-graders since the 1997-1998 school year, as has the use of marijuana. Cigarette use also decreased to 16 percent for 10th-graders and 8 percent for eighth-graders, a fact Haggerty attributed partly to a successful advertising campaign against drug use in the past few years.

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