IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - Students at Districts 91 and 93 are learning about the harmful effects of drugs. Longfellow Elementary in Idaho Falls kicked off red ribbon week with a Monday morning assembly. It is one of the oldest and largest drug prevention campaigns in the country.
The assembly teaches children about drug awareness and safety. Those are two topics school counselor Amy Gallagher said is important.
"I think some of our students do have drugs in their home and their seeing it and sometimes if they don't know what to do or handle those situations we want to teach them awareness and teach them how to stay safe," she said.
According to National Child Abuse statistics, one-third to two-thirds of child maltreatment cases involve drug use. More than a third of those kids will have a substance abuse problem before their 18th birthday. Gallagher said those statistics show how vital it is to teach kids now.
"I think hearing stories from the police officers and being able to look in the police officers cars helped them see that it is real, that sometimes when people do make poor choices because of drugs than this is what could happen," she said.
Bonneville County Deputy Daniel Sperry spoke with kids at the assembly.
He said the Sheriff's office wants to prevent drug incidents in our community, not just respond to them.
"It is never too early to build a foundation and teach them the difference between right and wrong," Sperry said.
At the end of the assembly, students came together to make a drug free pledge.
A few other schools in District 91 are doing activities for red ribbon week.In district 93, Rocky Mountain Middle School, Mountain Valley, and Woodland Hills Elementary will also be participating.