By: Nancy Shin and Athena Yap
Instead of trying to get high grades while in class, some San Marin students are just hoping to get high.
Results of a recent survey asking for student opinions and thoughts on the topic showed that 84 percent of students have witnessed others using drugs or alcohol at school.
The bathroom is the location where students viewed classmates engaging in these behaviors the most.
“Administrators are encouraged not to suspend and find alternatives to individuals using drugs, tobacco, and alcohol, as they are all not allowed on campus,” Principal Mark Sims said. “So we don’t suspend them, and instead we try to offer assistance, which includes counseling.”
Several teachers including English teacher Karen Arcangelo and history teacher Robert Watson agreed that drugs and alcohol are a problem at San Marin.
“We have had many issues over the years during school hours and school functions,” Arcangelo said. “More and more, we are seeing students’ grades and behavior suffer. Some have to go to rehab, and some are even getting in trouble with the law.”
“It makes me sad that students feel the need to engage in those behaviors at all, but even more so when it’s done at school,” Watson said. “It’s really unfortunate.”
42 percent of surveyed students reported that San Marin does not address the issue of drug use at school.
“Teachers know what is happening with drugs but say nothing because they think that the kid will get in trouble and will ruin many things,” an anonymous student said. “But it was their choice and they need help. Keeping it a secret won’t help long term.”
Another student voiced their opinion on the topic.
“There’s lots of kids, lots of room to hide illegal substances, and from what I’ve heard, such substances are incredibly addictive, so just having an addicted student take a health class won’t do anything,” said the anonymous student. “Arresting a student won’t do anything. Suspending them won’t do anything. The best thing you can do is send the kid to a rehab, and double down on filtering drugs.”