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This week's safe schools snippets

Committee scraps rule that would have required parents to be notified of school staff arrests

A tie vote Wednesday afternoon by the legislative Committee on Legal Services effectively killed the contentious State Board of Education rule that requires school districts to inform parents when employees are arrested for certain crimes.

The decision was the latest twist in a long story that has involved extensive negotiation among and multiple votes by board members, consistent opposition by the state’s mainline education interest groups and a lawsuit by the state’s largest teachers union. Read more in EdNews Colorado.

Survey finds more pot-smoking, less cigarette use among teens

American teenagers are now more likely to light up a joint than smoke a cigarette, new survey data from the National Institute on Drug Abuse show, and one in nine high school seniors has tried synthetic marijuana.

The Monitoring the Future Survey for 2011, released Wednesday, found that while the rate at which 8th, 10th, and 12th graders smoke cigarettes daily or even in a month is at a historical low, marijuana use has been rising for the past five years. Read more in EdWeek.

Fewer kids are exposed to unwanted sexual content online

Kids are not being exposed as much to unwanted sexual solicitations or porn on the Internet these days, according to a study released Thursday. While the problem still occurs, it seems that greater public awareness and social pressures have improved youth Internet safety in recent years.

The study, published online in the Journal of Adolescent Health, was based on nationwide surveys of youths ages 10 to 17 conducted in 2000, 2005 and 2010. Researchers found that the proportion of kids receiving unwanted sexual requests (from either adults, strangers or peers) declined from 13% in 2005 to 9% in 2010 and have fallen by half since 2000. Read more in the Los Angeles Times.

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