Parent Education Resources and Events
In December 2018, Madison community members, Lisa and Peter Deane, tragically lost their son Joe at the age of 23 to an overdose of pure fentanyl. Joe, a graduate of Daniel Hand High School, was a victim of the opioid epidemic that clearly knows no bounds. Connecticut has been hit particularly hard by this nation-wide epidemic. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse in 2017 there were, “955 overdose deaths involving opioids in Connecticut—a rate of 27.7 deaths per 100,000 persons, which is twofold higher than the national rate of 14.6 deaths per 100,000 persons”. In addition, the Institute reports that the number of deaths that year from synthetic opioids like fentanyl rose from 79 deaths in 2016 to 686 in 2017. After losing their son, the Deane family founded “demandZERO” to honor Joe’s memory by helping others who still have time to fight. The non-profit demandZERO partners with law enforcement officials to try and stop the trade and distribution of illegal drugs in New Haven and the greater shoreline area. One of their most recent achievements in helping parents is the creation of a “paraphernalia card”, a resource to assist parents in identifying items that serve as a delivery system for drug use. A digital version of this card is attached to this message demonstrating the commitment and partnership between the Madison Public Schools and groups such as demandZERO which confront threats to our students involving the proliferation of illegal drugs. Visit demandZERO on their Facebook page for more information. This project was made possible in part from a most generous donation from the 2019 Daniel Hand Soccer Team.
Another committed partner to the Madison Public Schools is the Madison Alcohol and Drug Education coalition (MADE). On Thursday November 14, 8am, MADE will be meeting at the library at Polson Middle School. All interested parents and community members are encouraged to attend and be a part of learning about the current trends impacting our young people and being a part of building a healthier community. At this meeting there will be a focus on the opioid epidemic as well as discussion on vaping and other emerging threats. The Madison Public Schools has partnered a great deal with MADE over the years to confront some of the most difficult challenges facing our youth and the community at large. We hope to see you there!
On Monday, November 18, from 7:00-8:00pm, State Representative Noreen Kokoruda, and State Senator, Christine Cohen, will be hosting a ‘Panel Discussion on Youth Vaping’ at the Memorial Town Hall on the Madison Green in the 3rd Floor Meeting Room at 8 Meeting House Lane. The panel will be comprised of a group of medical experts, Daniel Hand High School Principal TJ Salutari, Daniel Hand High School Assistant Principal Brian Bodner, Madison School Resource Office (SRO) Steve Manware, and members of our Youth & Family Services community. Together, the pane will be discussing the dangers associated with youth and teenage vaping and the precautions that parents and students can take in preventing this epidemic from spreading further. All parents and students are welcome and encouraged to attend.
A couple of years ago our PTOs hosted a community viewing of the movie, “Screenagers”. A viewing was also held for Polson Middle School students at that time. Concerns about the impact of technology on child development have grown exponentially over the years. “Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER: Uncovering Skills for Stress Resilience” is about helping young people thrive in our screen and stress-filled world. Filmmaker and physician Delaney Ruston uses a personal lens and professional eye to help us all flip the script on stress, anxiety, and depression. The movie follows the filmmaker as she, like many of us, finds herself at a loss on how to help her own teens as they struggle with their emotional wellbeing. Ruston sets out to understand these challenges in our current screen-filled society, and how we as parents and schools empower teens to overcome mental health challenges and build emotional agility, communication savvy, and stress resilience. This showing will be hosted by The Country School on November 20 at 6:30PM in the DeFrancis Gymnasium. We are fortunate for the partnership with The Country School in providing parents with resources such as this.
Another powerful partnership with The Country School is scheduled for December 2 at 6:30PM-8:00PM also will be hosted in the DeFrancis Gymnasium. Author Margaret Hagerman will lead a community-wide discussion on her recent book, “White Kids: Growing Up With Privilege in a Racially Divided America”. Hagerman, an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Mississippi State University, took a qualitative approach to explore how wealthy white children develop their ideas about race. Join us for a community-wide and author-led discussion presented in partnership by the Madison Public Schools and The Country School. This event is free and open to the public. Parents and educators are encouraged to attend. Refreshments will be served. For more information and to register: thecountryschool.org