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How should Colorado schools talk to students about legalized marijuana?

A new report from our partners at Rocky Mountain PBS I-News has found drug suspensions in Colorado schools are up since the legalization of recreational marijuana.

From the investigation:

The hike in drug violations came as overall suspensions, expulsions and referrals to police for other transgressions decreased between the year of legalization and the previous academic year, 2012-’13.

The I-News analysis found:

  • Middle schools had the highest percentage increase in drug violations, rising 24 percent in the school year ending last spring. This led to a decade-high 951 drug incidents in middle schools.
  • Drug incidents reported by all public schools reached a decade high last school year, rising 7.4 percent to 5,377 incidents. There are more drug violations in high schools, but those numbers stayed flat during the first year of legalization.
  • Statewide, since medical marijuana stores opened widely in 2010, drug incidents are the only major category of conduct violations that rose in Colorado school districts, according to the data.

That brings us to our question of the week: What should Colorado schools do to address the issue of legalized marijuana?

Each week, we ask readers a question about a timely or timeless question about their experiences in education. Readers who want to share their opinions should leave a response in the comment section below, tweet us @ChalkbeatCO, send an email, or leave a comment on our Facebook wall. Every Friday we round up the responses. Here’s last week’s.

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