SF School Policy Tackles Designer Drug Trend
January 31, 2012, 5:05 PM
SIOUX FALLS, SD -
A Sioux Falls police captain says synthetic marijuana use is on the rise, especially when it comes to school-aged children. It's a dangerous trend.
Assistant Superintendent Sue Simons said alarming is a good word to describe the growing synthetic marijuana trend.
"I think one case is too many cases," Simons said.
School officials are doing what they do best: educating. They said they are educating students and their families about the dangers of this trend.
"Our discipline plan also mandates parental involvement and that's how we feel we can help students and the community with parent involvement and more information on the situation," Simons said.
A zero-tolerance policy prohibiting the use and possession of designer drugs is applied to every case at Sioux Falls schools. Along with literature, a special video presentation was also available to parents. Simons says no policy is perfect, but this one leaves little room for interpretation.
"We've written it broadly enough for it to be mood-altering substances. Whether it's K2 this week or bath salts next week, we don't have to go back and re-write our policy," Simons said.
A Sioux Falls Police Captain praises the school district for this approach.
"They're very open with their students," Capt. Greg VandeKamp said.
Having an open-door policy makes all the difference. Even though school policies only go so far, he says Sioux Falls is on the right track because designer drugs aren't going away.
"It'd be like parenting without rules. You're going to see a lot more trouble. Just because you set a rule, doesn't mean you'll always obey it, but at least there's boundaries and you have your kids work within those boundaries," VandeKamp said.
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