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OSD PRIDE Survey Reveals Drug, Alcohol, Suicide Statistics

By Alyssa Schnugg
News Editor

The number of students who contemplate suicide at Oxford Middle School is slightly above the national average, according to the results of a recent survey taken by students in the sixth, eighth and tenth grades.

The PRIDE Survey polled middle school and high school students in the Oxford School District. Photo via the report.

The results of the 2017-2018 PRIDE Survey were released Monday during the Oxford School District’s regular meeting of the Board of Trustees.

Of the 217 eighth graders surveyed, 6.9 percent said they have thought of suicide. The national average is 6.3 percent. The 295 sixth-grade students surveyed said 4.4 percent had considered suicide. Of the 175 10th-grade students surveyed 5.3 percent said they had thought about a suicide.

The survey also asked students about alcohol and drug use. Students answered the survey anonymously.

Alcohol was the most commonly used drug by all three grades. At OIS, 5.4 percent said they had used alcohol within the last 30 days. OMS eighth-graders indicated that 3.5 percent had used alcohol and 18.6 percent of the 10th graders surveyed said they had used alcohol in the past 30 days.

Nationally, 3.1 percent of the sixth graders, 6.7 percent of eighth graders and 18 percent of 10th-graders admitted to using alcohol 30 days before the survey.

Most of the OIS students surveyed believe cigarettes are the greatest health risk compared to alcohol, marijuana and prescription drugs, while both OMS and OHS students believe cigarettes and prescription drugs are the greatest health risks.

As far as marijuana use, 0.7 percent of sixth-graders, 2.5 percent of eight graders and 9.3 percent of 10th graders said they have tried marijuana at least once. All three grades were under the national averages of 1.7, 3.9 and 11.4, respectfully.

Also, in the survey, 21.8 percent of surveyed 10th graders said they felt unsafe at times on the school bus, 18.1 felt unsafe in the halls at school, 17.1 felt unsafe in the cafeteria, 15.9 felt unsafe in the gym and 14.6 felt unsafe in the parking lot.

Board President Gray Edmondson said he was surprised by some of the information in the report.

“I was very surprised about the number of students who said they felt unsafe in certain areas,” he said. “I hope we’re using this information to make some changes.”

SuzAnne Liddell, Ph.D., director of Federal Programs and Student Registration, said principals and school staff use the survey to see issues going on at school.

“It helps with forming our Wellness Plan and drug and alcohol and tobacco educational programs,” she said Monday.

To view PRIDE statistics in their entirety, please follow this link. 

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