Survey: Young Students Use Drugs as Often as High Schoolers

Updated: 11/01/2012 7:42 AM KSTP.com By: Nick Winkler

Alarming survey results show younger students keeping pace with much older students when it comes to using drugs and alcohol.

Minnesota Adult & Teen Challenge surveyed 25,000 students statewide during the 2011-2012 school year. The survey revealed middle school students in grades 6-8 reported using drugs and alcohol at the same rate as their high school counterparts.

The survey also revealed 37 percent of younger female students have abused prescription drugs, which is more than male students of the same age. The survey reveals female students are also more likely to binge drink.

One recovering drug user tells KSTP he used to feign depression to hide his habit from his family. Following the survey results, he's advising parents to be ultra-aggressive with their children in regard to discussing drug matters.

Counselors say having a single talk with children is not enough. They advise an ongoing conversation regarding drug use.