When it comes to underage drinking, all Maine kids are at risk. As a parent you can work with your local schools system to help prevent underage drinking. Working together, parents, teachers, administrators and coaches can be powerful influencers of teen behavior. If you don't know the answers to these questions, ask someone at your school for clarification. This checklist can help as you talk with your school:
- Underage drinking is considered an important issue at my teen's school.
- My teen's school has specified rules about underage drinking.
- My teen's school will enforce the consequences of breaking those rules.
- My teen's school requires parents to be kept informed of school rules regarding underage drinking.
- I will actively support the underage drinking rules and the enforcement of those rules.
If you are concerned that your school might not be doing all that they can to help prevent underage drinking, here are some suggestions:
- Encourage your school to add information or a speaker on underage drinking to existing parent meetings (such as Open House, Athletic Kick-Off Meetings, Award Banquets, and more.)
- Ask your school principal to write a letter of introduction and support to the monitoring materials produced by the Office of Substance Abuse.
- Encourage your school principal to write a letter to all parents about the school's position on underage drinking.
- Support your school system when they do enforce consequences, no matter what.
- If you hear information from your teens about potential issues in school, share those issues with school authorities.