Many local educators are now being trained to deal with overdoses in the classroom.
A long list of schools is partnering up with the Allegheny County Health Department to combat the drug problem.
As South Park staff gear up for the year ahead, it’s hard to ignore the growing drug problem that’s plagued school districts across the county.
“I don't think you can be ignorant to the fact that it doesn't occur here or it couldn't occur here, I think you have to be proactive,” Wayne Gdovic, superintendent for South Park.
Mike Manko with the district's attorney office presented startling drug and alcohol statistics to staff Friday.
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He says 66 percent of high school students say drugs are used, kept or sold on school grounds.
“It's extremely concerning as both the superintendent and a parent myself to see the statistic and how much they've grown,” Gdovic said.
That’s why he, and more than 170 schools in 44 districts in the county, are partnering with the health department to train teachers on overdose awareness.
“We know that young people, old people, everyone is impacted by the overdose epidemic so we felt that it was really important that we educate schools,” said Latika Davis with the Allegheny County Health Department.
Staff will learn how to recognize signs of an overdose and how to apply Narcan.
“We want to make sure our teachers are equipped with the right information, the ability to direct parents and students and the right resources and help whenever needed,” Gdovic said.
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