Fake fentanyl: What parents and students need to know
Oregon has lost several students to fentanyl in the last few years. Linked below are fact sheets to help educate students, parents and the community about the dangers of fake pills made from deadly fentanyl.
Fentanyl being disguised as candy
Fentanyl is currently very common in our community; it is a powerful synthetic opioid that is like morphine but is 50 to 100 times more potent. Fentanyl is odorless, tasteless and colorless. Young people think they are taking “blues,” OxyContin or Xanax, but they are often taking pills laced with fentanyl. Recently, law enforcement agencies have also warned about the danger of fentanyl being disguised as candy, specifically targeted to be sold to children.
Talking to your student is the best prevention
The best prevention is talking to your student about never taking any medication that doesn’t come from their doctor. This includes never taking pills, even from friends. This is a conversation that can literally save your child’s life.
One pill has the potential to be deadly.
Other prevention strategies
One of the best ways to protect youth from substances is by having open communication and educating them on the risks of substance use. Listening to them without judging is a critical tool you can provide as their trusted adult.
Look for changes in behavior
Look out for changes in behavior, such as irregular eating or sleeping patterns, low energy, general signs of depression or anxiety, unusual irritability, slipping grades, lack of interest in activities they love, and even drastic clothing style changes. Trust your instincts. If you notice a change, ask about it.
Monitor social media
Talk to your child and monitor their social media use. The online environment provides platforms for people to sell substances. Substances can be offered by someone met online.
- Marion County Drug Treatment – 503-588-5358
- Polk County Drug Treatment – 503-585-3012
- Bridgeway Recovery – 503-399-5597
Tips on how to keep the children in your care safe
School Safety Systems in Salem-Keizer Public Schools
School Safety Systems in Salem-Keizer Public Schools
Video: School Safety and Emergency Procedures
Learn about safety protocols and emergency procedures implemented in all Salem-Keizer schools. Safety and security staff and district leadership were joined by local and state law enforcement agency partners to share information with the community. This was one of three safety sessions held this year about student safety in our schools. The other two sessions held were Student Voices, We All Belong and Social Media and Online Safety.
School Safety and Emergency Procedures – Presentation
School Safety and Emergency Procedures – Questions & Answers
Talking to children and teens about violence
At Salem-Keizer Public Schools, the safety of our students is our absolute top priority. Below are resources and information on the safety and security systems in place across the district.
Oregon Public Broadcasting radio interview
Courtenay McCarthy, a school psychologist at the Salem-Keizer school district, explains how the Salem-Keizer program works and the impact it’s having in Salem and beyond.
Oregon has lost several students to fentanyl in the last few years. Linked below are fact sheets to help educate students, parents and the community about the dangers of fake pills made from deadly fentanyl. Learn more
Multi-Tiered Systems of Support
Our children in today’s world have unique emotional and behavioral needs unlike anything we have seen before. This is not unique to Salem-Keizer. Schools across the country are seeing similar needs for support of students. At Salem-Keizer, we work to address the needs of our students through Multi-Tiered Systems of Support. These systems allow us to provide the right support for each student to address their emotional, behavioral, mental, and academic needs.
Behavioral Threat Assessment
Our team of specialists partners with agencies across Marion, Polk, and Yamhill Counties to identify students who may be exhibiting indicators of extreme aggression toward others, and we provide wraparound services like safety planning and mental health support to address those students’ needs.
Salem-Keizer’s behavioral threat assessment system is used by other school districts around the country. Below are some recent discussions in the media that provide a description of how our system works.
- PBS Newshour: Researchers look for ways to identify young people who are on the ‘pathway to violence’
- NPR: Interview with author examining behavioral patterns
Partnering with Law Enforcement
We work side by side with the Keizer Police Department, Salem Police Department and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office both in and out of our schools. When any concern for our school’s safety or a threat is reported, they move swiftly to investigate. It is very important to talk with children about the consequences of making any type of threat, which can range from a minimum of disciplinary action at school to criminal charges.
You can learn more about our school safety systems and procedures, including collaboration with our local law enforcement partners by viewing our recent safety series webinar.
Salem-Keizer Public Schools is an active member of SafeOregon, which gives kids, parents, schools, and community members a confidential way to report safety threats or potential acts of violence. Managed by the Oregon State Police, this program has proven to prevent acts of violence. I encourage you to download the mobile app on your phone, and on your child’s phone as well. You can also call or text 844-472-3367 anytime.
When a positive case of COVID-19 is identified within the school setting, we work closely with the local public health authority to ensure that the person diagnosed with COVID-19 follows instructions for isolation and remains away from others until they can safely return to school.
Families will receive a weekly notification on Saturdays about COVID-19 cases in schools with a link to this dashboard.
Improving safety and security through capital improvements
The 2018 bond program is improving safety and security across the district. Thirty-six of our schools are receiving renovations to the front entry to improve the office staff’s ability to monitor and control who enters the front entrance. Most of those improvements will be in the form of a secured check-in space at the front entry. Schools are also receiving upgrades to electronic badge access systems and to intercom systems, which will be able to send messages directly into classrooms.