CLARK — In response to new trends that are facing teens today with alcohol and alcohol abuse, Arthur L. Johnson High School in Clark hosted a parent information forum on Monday, Oct. 18.
Recently, the Clark Police Department and the Clark School System have become aware of more students binge drinking and being able to acquire alcohol with greater alcohol content than in the past. Because of this, ALJ Principal Rick Delmonaco, Student Assistance Counselor Ron Ferrara, and Clark Juvenile Officer Sergeant Jim Rapp, decided to coordinate an evening program to inform parents about the dangers and how they can assist their children to make wise decisions.
Members of the Clark and Garwood Boards of Education, the Clark Police Department, the Garwood Police Department, the Clark Emergency Squad, and Prevention Links presented information to parents and answered questions that they might have on the topic. Clark Police Chief Dennis Connell and Clark Superintendent Kenneth Knops thanked parents for attending and finding out more information in an effort to help their children be protected.
Specifically addressed by the panelists were the implications of youths consuming alcoholic energy drinks. These drinks have been banned from many universities due to the dangers associated with using these products. Mixing alcohol with energy drinks encourages binge drinking and increases the likelihood of blacking out and the need for medical assistance. Many parents expressed concern that these drinks can be easily acquired and bear a close resemblance to non-alcoholic drinks.
Delmonaco felt the evening achieved its goal of getting this important message out to the parents. “We are very fortunate to have so many caring parents and dedicated professionals who give up their time to help keep kids safe.”
Pictured from left to right: ALJ Assistant Principal David Oliveira, Prevention Links Coordinator Mike Litterer, Garwood Police Office Sam Rocco, Clark Police Juvenile Officer Jim Rapp, and ALJ Principal Rick Delmonaco
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