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Wed January 27, 2010
Survey unveils youth risks
By Molly Messick
Laramie, Wy – Smoking, alcohol and drug use are on a downward trend among middle and high school students in Wyoming. That's according to the results of the state's 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Survey. Still, Superintendent of Public Instruction Jim McBride says it's important to keep chipping away at stubborn numbers. More than 40 percent of high school students surveyed reported drinking in the last 30 days and close to 15 percent of middle school students said they were sexually active. McBride says that number is particularly troubling.
"It's surprising to me and it's pretty clear - in the old days, you know in my, when I was a kid, mostly those kinds of things weren't addressed at school. But now it's clear that they have to be."
Only about 62 percent of high school students in the survey reported using condoms. The Department of Education began gathering the high school data in 1991. It began tracking middle school students in 1999.