Pride Survey Results for Pocahontas County 2022
The Pocahontas County Prevention Coalition and the Board of Education purchased the Pride survey for students in grades four through 12. The purpose of the survey was to determine drug use and attitudes about drug use in that population. The survey was administered by the staff of each schools in 2022.
Here is a brief summary of the findings for grades nine through 12. Much of the data has been compared to that of the national average for youth in the same grades. There were 184 surveys submitted.
Past 30 Days – Use of Any Illicit Substance
The percentage of Pocahontas County High School students using any illicit substance was 5.4%. The national average was 12.8%.
Past One Year – Use of Any Illicit Substance
National Average: 22.8%
While these are encouraging numbers, illegal substances are still all around us. The last Pocahontas County Grand Jury Indictments totaled 29 and 12 were drug related.
In Greenbrier County, there were 74 total indictments and 25 were drug related. Fourteen were for methamphetamine.
National data for the past 30 years shows the most commonly used substance has been alcohol, followed by tobacco. More recently, nationally, marijuana has overtaken tobacco.
Types of Drugs Used By Students
Who Reported Past 30-Day Use
Type Percentage Number
Cigarettes 4.8 <10
E-cigarettes 10.9 18
Alcohol 15.9 26
Marijuana 4.9 <10
Prescription 0.6 <10
Over the counter 0 <10
Inhalants 1.3 <10
Opioids 0 <10
Methamphetamine 0.6 <10
When and Where Substances Are Used as Reported by PCHS Students Who Have Used in the Past 30 Days
Friend’s House 52.5%
At school 5.0%
After school 40.0%
Week nights 27.5%
Before school 17.5%
During school 10.0%
Nationally, the most popular answer was “friend’s house.”
It is important to secure prescription medications, alcohol and other substances of abuse in your home. Also, know where your children are visiting and make sure they are safe.
The less students believe a substance is harmful and risky to use, the more they are likely to try it. When asked about how harmful smoking one or more packs of cigarettes per day and how harmful vaping and e-cigarettes are, they responded that the latter was less harmful. That coincides with the higher percentage of reported vaping use.
Research has shown that parents play an influential role in discouraging substance use in adolescents.
Students were asked how disapproving they think their parents are about teens using alcohol and marijuana.
Only approximately 73% of students in ninth and 10th grades think their parents disapprove of students drinking alcohol. In comparison they think their parents are more disapproving of marijuana use, 84% and 79% respectively.
But in 11th and 12th grades approximately 92% of them believe their parents disapprove of underage drinking and marijuana.
Perhaps parents start talking to their children about substance abuse later in their high school years. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration recommends that parents talk to their children about drugs starting in elementary school.
In a previous Pride Survey in our county, there was a correlation seen between parents who have discussions with their children with set rules and consequences about using drugs and less drug use in teens.
Alcohol, tobacco and marijuana are considered Gateway Drugs leading to experimentation and use of other substances. During the brain’s development in the preteen and teen years the learning, memory and judgment centers can be affected by use of alcohol, marijuana and other substances. This is why there is such an effort to educate families and communities to discourage drug use in their children.
In a section of the survey on mental health, an alarming number of students reported having thoughts of suicide.
Percentage of Students Reporting Thoughts of Suicide
It is imperative that we all know the signs of depression and seek help for our children.
This is only a small part of the results in the Pride Survey. If you or your organization would like more information contact the Pocahontas County Prevention Coalition at email@example.com
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