Colorado schools reported a 45 percent spike in drug violations over the past four years, a trend that occurred even as the total number of other violations reported to state officials declined.
Interviews with school and district officials, health care workers and students statewide depict the proximity of medical marijuana dispensaries and the saturation of medical marijuana in communities as the key factor behind the increase.
In January, federal prosecutors announced a crackdown on medical marijuana dispensaries within 1,000 feet of schools, citing an increase in student abuse of marijuana.
What’s happening at your school? Click in the boxes below to see a four-year history of drug offenses and their disposition, from suspension to referral to police.
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- To compare schools or districts, hit “Ctrl” or “command” and click on as many names as you’d like to see.
- Clicking the “Details” button brings up detailed information about the penalties, such as expulsion, that resulted from the drug violations. The most serious penalties, including out-of-school suspension, expulsion and referral to law enforcement, are listed.
- Schools may impose more than one penalty for drug possession or sale, such as an expulsion and a referral to law enforcement. The number of incidents does not always equal the number of sanctions.
- Schools are required to report drug and other incidents annually to state officials and must follow strict reporting criteria. For example, they are asked to report only those incidents leading to suspension, expulsion, referral to law enforcement or “other” serious action. They are specifically asked not to report incidents leading to lesser punishment such as detention.
- Can’t find a school? Think your school data is in error? Email us at EdNews@EdNewsColorado.org and we’ll check it out.
**Data source: Colorado Department of Education
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