Drug Free Clubs off to Strong Start
Chillicothe Gazette By Chris Balusik
CHILLICOTHE — Culture is everything when it comes to drumming up interest in the Drug Free Clubs of America initiative and creating that culture appears to be off to a solid start in Ross County.
Chris Scott, who has been at the forefront of the effort to get the local My Attitude Determines Everything (MADE) program into all of the Ross County public school districts, has been impressed with the early response to the initiative on the part of both students and community partners. On the school district side of things, that’s been particularly true at Huntington High School, where about 54 percent of the student body has signed up to participate and underwent the initial drug testing last Friday. That figure includes 65 percent of the senior class.
“Typically, (when) the Drug-Free Clubs go into a school, they expect 10 to 15 percent enrollment in a normal one school type of situation,” Scott said. “When we were doing schools all across the county, I had told them my expectation would be about double that, around 30 percent.”
The Drug Free Clubs approach involves students entering an agreement to remain drug-free and submitting to random drug screenings conducted at the school throughout the school year. In return, they can receive reward perks at school, prizes provided by the school and businesses in the community and a card that not only entitles them to discounts or freebies at participating area businesses, but also guarantees them a job interview at businesses that agree to that condition.