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About Half of Newport High School Students Have Tried Marijuana

The data was compiled by the Department of Epidemiology in the Brown University School of Public Health for the Rhode Island State Epidemiology and Outcomes Workgroup headed by Brown Professor Stephen Buka.

Written by William Rupp and Olga Enger

Students in Newport schools report they use more drugs and alcohol than students in other communities, according to a special report.

The data was compiled by the Department of Epidemiology in the Brown University School of Public Health for the Rhode Island State Epidemiology and Outcomes Workgroup headed by Brown Professor Stephen Buka.

Forty-six percent of Newport High School students reported they have smoked marijuana, which is the highest in the state.  Ten percent of students reported they drink moderate amounts of alcohol, which is the second highest in the state.  

The workgroup is a cross-state agency formed because there is no single state agency that is responsible for drug-use prevention, reporting and treatment, said Buka.

According to the results, Newport high school students rank (in comparison to Rhode Island's 39 cities and towns):

  • 1 in they have tried marijuana 
  • 2 in moderate alcohol use.
  • 5 in their illegal use of cocaine;
  • 11 in their use of prescription drugs such as Oxycontin, Percocet, Vicodin, codeine, and Adderall;
  • 15 in being under the influence of drugs in school;
Newport middle school students rank:
  • 3 in marijuana use,
  • 9 in current alcohol use, 
  • 24 in using prescription drugs,
  • 31 in using inhalants,
  • 14 in overall alcohol use.

The students were asked questions such as:

  • Have you tried prescription drugs without a doctor’s prescription?
  • Have you tried marijuana?
  • Have you tried inhalants?
  • Have you tried cocaine?
  • Have you been under the influence of drugs at school during the past 12 months?
Click here to see the results for yourself at the RI Prevention Resource Center.
George Costanza December 17, 2013 at 02:34 PM
Thank you subsidized housing!!!!!!!!
Robert E December 17, 2013 at 03:35 PM
Hey George rich white kids smoke too.
nptresident December 17, 2013 at 06:48 PM
"Newport" High School? Seriously? Yes, George, only poor kids smoke pot....
George Costanza December 17, 2013 at 08:07 PM
Percentage of students at Rogers (Not "Newport High School? where is that?") who come from rich families (families who earn more than $300k per year) 0%. Percentage of students whose families receive either (1) food stamps (2) subsidized housing (3) free lunches (4) medicaid, or (5) SSDI: almost 50%. You guys can live in a fantasy world if you like, I am just relying on the numbers. Also, rich kids smoke pot and do drugs too... rich kids also graduate high school, Rogers seems to have a big problem with that.
Taxpayer December 17, 2013 at 08:10 PM
I wonder how the survey responses were validated ? Maybe the students were having some fun at the studies expense?
Diane Conlon December 17, 2013 at 11:01 PM
There is the Met High School. Maybe Newport is more honest!
ben ellcome December 18, 2013 at 07:32 AM
If you are concerned about the substance use in our youth population, then come to a community meeting for the Newport Substance Abuse Prevention Task Force. We meet the 3rd Tuesday of every month.
tiff December 18, 2013 at 08:23 AM
"Newport" High School....assuming you have the correct school (eye roll) has 600 kids in it which amount to 300 kids. Perhaps they are more honest but what about the other communities? I am sure there are more than 300 kids in other communities...including private schools that have tried pot. This is just another sensational headline to make the an urban school look bad. It means nothing. Btw, "Newport" Middle School doesn't exits either. Who edits this crap?
Veteran December 18, 2013 at 08:26 AM
Always great to hear the positives. Thanks once again for this great news. NOT! Come on report some of the good things. I coach and volunteer at Rogers and let me just say you can write 20 articles about the positives. And yes, drugs are a problem, but Rogers isn't the only one with it.
ben ellcome December 18, 2013 at 08:30 AM
Tiff You are right, other communities are challenged with the increased use of MJ. Newport County is in s interesting place, in that all town in the county have recent data in the for of a needs assessment of the youth population. The Substance prevention coalition in each town would be able to provide you with more information.
ben ellcome December 18, 2013 at 08:34 AM
I support your idea Veteran, lets write that article.
Patrick Luce (Editor) December 18, 2013 at 09:18 AM
Hi everyone, just to clarify, the headline refers to all high school students in Newport, not just those who go to Rogers
Former Newporter December 18, 2013 at 09:44 AM
seems like george costanza has a hate issue. he might want to check those categories. sure many in 'subsidized housing' (as he so eloquently put it) smoke marijuana. i think many teens do. those other drugs, especially the prescription?...well, that covers all the demographics.
tiff December 18, 2013 at 09:58 AM
This might seem like a small point, but when the NAME of the high school is in the picture along with the article, perhaps you should know the name of the school. Also, if the article does not make any reference to private schools students. If you are referring to Newport high school students, then High and School should not be capitalized making it look like a proper noun. Come on Patch, step up your standards...also, please report more positive things about the schools. Surely you can find them if you just looked. But then again, you won't be able to find "Newport High School" because it doesn't exist. ARGH!
tiff December 18, 2013 at 09:58 AM
Sorry for my typos....but I am not the journalist here.
Patrick Luce (Editor) December 18, 2013 at 10:39 AM
Hi tiff, Thanks for the feedback. I see where the confusion comes in... it is Patch's style to capitalize each word in a headline, so it looks like we're calling it Newport High School. The headline is intended to refer to high school students in Newport. That's an issue we'll consider when wording headlines going forward. Thanks!
tiff December 18, 2013 at 11:10 AM
It's in the text of the article too....
nptresident December 18, 2013 at 11:40 AM
Well, according to the study, Newport students are not depressed! Go Rogers!
van derrick December 21, 2013 at 02:53 AM
Also there is no mention if this is a trend. Likely this has been going on since the place was built.

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