Principal takes action after drug, alcohol incidents at school increase

SEATTLE - An increase in drug and alcohol-related incidents at Roosevelt High School is now prompting school administrators to take action.

Principal Brian Vance sent a letter to parents earlier this month notifying them about an increase in students being under the influence of marijuana and alcohol in the classroom or at school-related activities. During the fall semester, there were 24 cases - twice as many compared to a year ago.

"I think we've increased our awareness as a staff around these issues," said Principal Brian Vance. "We're identifying and intervening with more students."

In the letter to parents, Vance said the freshmen class makes up about half of the recent incidents.

"I think (freshmen) think it's cool when they get into high school," said student Grace Prince.

"I think it might have been good for giving the parents a bit of awareness about it, but I don't think it will do anything for the kids really," said student Jessica Garcila.

According to a healthy youth survey, at least 70% of students at Roosevelt High School are not using drugs and alcohol.

"It's a minority of students at the school that we're trying to work with and help understand the impact of drug-alcohol use," said Vance. "The majority of students are doing what they need to do and are focused on their education and making good choices."

Vance invited freshmen parents to a discussion about the impact of drug use on teens and what parents can do to prevent drug use among children. The event is scheduled for Wednesday, March 19th at 7pm in the high school library.

"It's a problem everywhere. It's not unique to Roosevelt High School that there's issues around students using drugs and alcohol. We just happen to be intervening with it right now," said Vance.

"I think it's disappointing to see this kind of attention on Roosevelt," said student Reuben Appel. "I think Roosevelt is a good school and people should be looking at the better parts of Roosevelt and not this part."