North and South Summit school districts release survey results
November 17, 2010
Shortly after Park City School District released the results of the 2009 Student Health and Risk Prevention survey, South Summit and North Summit school districts released the findings at their schools as well.
South Summit School District Superintendent Barry Walker said one of the main reasons to participate in the survey was to secure funding as part of Title IV, the safe and drug-free schools clause of the No Child Left Behind Act.
From among 225 total South Summit students who participated in the survey, many results mirrored averages from across the state. Much of the alcohol, tobacco and other drug use peaked among 10th-graders.
Of the 45 seniors, about 38 percent said they had tried more than just a few sips of alcohol, compared to about 37 percent in the rest of Utah. About 20 percent claimed they have smoked cigarettes, slightly below the state average of about 21 percent. Almost 18 percent said they have tried marijuana, about 2 percent less than the state. About 13 percent, nearly double the state average, claimed they have used inhalants such as glue, aerosol and other gases and sprays in order to get high.
Sophomores reported the district’s highest uses of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, hallucinogens, cocaine, methamphetamines and sedatives. Each was also higher than the state average.
While the survey looks at environmental risks and emotional and mental health, Walker said some of the data is more useful to district administrators.
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"Most of what we look at is just to see what the alcohol and drug-use data tells us," he said.
An overwhelming number of students who answered yes to having drunk alcohol reported they got it at a party; 82 percent of seniors, 67 percent of sophomores and 56 percent of students in eighth grade. Other significant sources came from paying others to obtain it, and having a person of legal age get it for the students.
Few programs have been directly affected by the results of the SHARP survey, Walker said. But by participating, the district received about $2,000 last year, which was used for Red Ribbon Week activities and for a presentation regarding substance-abuse awareness.
Alcohol and drug-related issues weren’t the only topics of interest during the assembly. "Social behaviors, respect for others and bullying were part of that program this year," Walker said.
North Summit School District
The SHARP survey is administered every two years. In February 2007, 131 North Summit School School District students in grades six, eight, 10 and 12 participated in the survey. North Summit Superintendent Steve Carlsen said they didn’t participate in the 2009 survey most likely for reasons of budget.
Similar to the data from South Summit School District, many substance-use statistics in North Summit School District peaked, some rather significantly, among sophomores.
About 24 percent of sophomores reported smoking cigarettes, compared to about 8 percent of seniors and 7 percent of eighth-graders. About 14 percent of 10th-graders said they smoked marijuana, while about 4 percent of students in 12th grade and 2 percent of eighth-grade students said they had. Sophomores reported another significant spike in the use of narcotic and prescription drugs without doctor instructions, each about 14 percent in 2007. About 8 percent of seniors reported using sedatives and 4 percent said they used prescription narcotics.
Alcohol use also peaked among sophomores. About 23 percent claimed to have had more than just a few sips, as opposed to 20 percent of seniors and 15 percent of 8th-graders.
A significant number of students polled claimed to have gambled within the last year, once again peaking among sophomores.
With a biannual distribution, administrators in Park City, South Summit and North Summit school districts said they have registered to participate in the 2011 SHARP survey.