Tracking reports of middle school drinking for six months revealed multiple incidents that made it to online news or were discussed on blogs. Here are a few:
At Gulf Breeze Middle School in Santa Rosa, CA, the 2008-2009 school year ended with four students expelled for possessing and distributing alcohol on school grounds. Eleven students from other middle and high schools were expelled that same week for alcohol and/or drug possession.
At Ponus Ridge Middle School in Norwalk, CT, 22 middle school students were caught consuming alcohol on school grounds. Principal Linda Sumpter said the students included boys and girls from sixth, seventh and eighth grades. Allegedly, three of the students were selling alcohol they brought from home disguised in iced tea and Gatorade bottles.
At Timberland Middle School in Plaistow, NH, principal Michael Hogan sent a note home to parents telling them only clear bottles could be brought to school. Students were caught with alcohol on school grounds, and because the bottles were colored they could not immediately tell the kids were drinking alcohol. The police were not called.
At Redland Middle School in Rockville, MD, nine sixth and seventh grade students were disciplined after alcohol was brought into the bleachers before the start of school. Former principal Carol Weiss recommended them for suspension or expulsion.
In Norfolk, VA, three weeks after the death of Taylor Meyer, a 17-year-old Plainville girl who drowned after wandering away from a teen drinking party, kids drank alcohol like it hadn’t happened. Thirty three teens, most of them schoolmates and neighbors of the deceased girl were arrested for underage binge drinking at two parties. Parents expected her death would act as a warning to other area teens. Not a chance.