Staff Report

Hillsborough County Anti-Drug Alliance (HCADA) returned to the Falkenburg Road Jail training room last month to teach School Resource Deputies (SRD) of area high schools a curriculum focusing on tackling substance abuse.

HCADA has addressed the issue at the start of the 2015-2016 school year by first focusing on middle school students and their assigned school resource deputies.

In an effort to emphasize the dangers of alcohol and other drugs, such as tobacco, marijuana, over-the-counter and prescription medications, hookah and emerging drugs, the HCADA drew attention to the impact that the many issues high school students deal with have on their health, safety, social life, school performance, and relationships with friends and family.

With marijuana uses on the rise, coupled with synthetic forms of marijuana known as Spice or K2, not to mention students combining prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications and inhalants with alcohol, local deputies see no shortage of challenges.

“Empowering the SRDs with up-to-date educational resources will ensure that students get off to a great start this year and in years to come,” said Cindy Grant, director of the HCADA, as she commented on the middle school training session earlier in the year.

Officials are clear that substance abuse is a problem as it threatens the safety of many kids worldwide endangering entire communities.

Officials said that the meticulously researched, developmentally appropriate curriculum was developed by experienced guidance counselors, clinical psychologists and drug-education experts.

Deputies were engaged in the program through dynamic videos and thought provoking activities to help teach high school students deal with a number of situations, such as resolve conflicts and avoid the pitfalls of alcohol, drugs, bullying and negative peer pressure.

HCADA has been in existence, active in the community, and supportive of law enforcement, the court system, prevention agencies, and substance abuse treatment providers since its inception in 1989.

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