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The Newberg Anti Drug Youth Campaign Essay

946 words - 4 pages

According to the Oregon Healthy Teens Survey, conducted with the Oregon Department of Education, marijuana and alcohol use among teens for the 2012-2013 school years yielded higher averages in Yamhill County than the averages in the state. In 2013, 3.2% of eighth graders admitted to using five or more alcoholic beverages at least one time in the past 30 days, compared to the state average of 2.9% (Oregon Healthy 53). According to the same survey, 2.9% of 11th graders are using marijuana 20-39 times in 30 days, compared to only 1.8% average in the state (Oregon Healthy 54). At this time the Chehalem Valley Middle School, located in Newberg, Oregon has no formal anti-drug awareness program. The school utilizes a two-week program focusing on overall health wellness, eating healthy, and some effects of drug use. The program is usually in the spring. Although other programs failed, Newberg, Oregon’s middle schools must implement an anti-drug campaign, which will expand on the “Above the Influence” campaign.
Programs that have failed in the past include the “Just Say No” and “D.A.R.E.” programs. In the 1980’s, the anti-drug campaign “Just Say No” failed to teach the youth that drugs were harmful. The catchy phrase was used to help children say no to drugs and make healthy choices. Simply saying no without much explanation of what drugs are and how they affect the body and mind was not enough to keep children from experimenting with drugs and alcohol. In addition, in the 1980’s, was the Drug Abuse Resistance Education or “D.A.R.E.” program, this program also failed to prove effective. According to Don Des Jarlais PHD, research conducted in 1994, the research failed to prove that the program was useful, and after cuts from government funding, many argue the program was not effective (2). D.A.R.E. was also criticized because it used fear and outdated research of the effects of drugs on the body. One positive result in the program was that it did educate parents how to talk to children about drugs and the effects of drug use. Unfortunately, it is hard to reach children through the reasoning when they feel they are invincible.
“Above the Influence” is showing progress at preventative measures to reduce marijuana use in middle schools, and Newberg Schools could expand the campaign to educate children about drug use. “Above the Influence” is an advertisement campaign that encourages teens to build on positive self-image and avoid the negative influences. The program targets teens through Public Service Announcements and through social media. The program gives the teen options to see the classifications of drugs, and the harm drug use does to teens. An article by Christopher Carpenter, states that eighth grade girls showed a drop in marijuana use when exposed to the...

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