The importance of discussing substances with your student

Published 8:29 pm Tuesday, October 2, 2018

On Monday, several Valley High School students were caught drinking a concoction that contained fruit juice, alcohol and a controlled substance that one student told police was codeine. While this may seem like a strange thing for high school kids to mix up, the drink they created is quite common in popular culture, being referenced as “sizzurp,” “purple drank” and “lean” in Top 40 charting music.

It’s a drug-laced beverage that gives the user a euphoric, lethargic feeling but can also have extremely serious effects on health. From memory loss and urinary tract infections to, in extreme cases of overuse, coma and death, lean is detrimental to the user, especially when they start experimenting with it in high school.

Kids want to do what they think looks cool, and with popular musicians and personalities drinking lean as part of their lifestyle, imitation is bound to happen.

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Fortunately, the faculty and staff of Valley High reacted promptly to the situation and those who were hospitalized were quickly released, but the situation could have been magnified if the kids used it in an area without adult supervision.

As Maj. Mike Reynolds of Valley PD and Superintendent Kelli Hodge said, this incident should act as a wake-up call to parents who have abusable substances in their home. From beer to cough syrup, everyone with children should take inventory and stay aware.

Also, a major part of preventing kids from using substances and potentially hurting themselves or others comes from an open line of communication.

By talking to children about the dangers of these things less and less high schoolers will fall into the same problem.

The situation at Valley High was handled well and luckily no one was hurt. Let’s work toward making sure no child ever is.