_B-PEN (Brookline Parent Education Network)
helps parents navigate the
social, emotional and developmental challenges affecting today’s teens and
pre-teens – common challenges that can lead to risky behavior. An outreach
initiative that collaborates with Brookline school administrators and PTO’s,
the organization’s goals are to facilitate parent connections:
* with other parents,
* with school and town resources, and
* with helpful information via written/electronic materials on a wide variety of
THE CHANGING FACE OF MARIJUANA -- Revisiting the Conversation with Adolescents
With the legalization of marijuana in other states and the legalization of medical marijuana here in Massachusetts, cannabis is very much a part of our culture, and there is a shifting spectrum of attitudes. How does this impact the conversations we are having with teens? How do we clear up misinformation and misperceptions and prevent the development of marijuana abuse disorders among our youth? This was the focus of a recent forum bringing together Brookline students, parents, and school/health administrators and staff. Read the complete Parent Update to learn:
Did you know that according to DrugFree.org, less than half of teens with mental health disorders get needed help? Brookline's Wellness Committee Dec. 5 summit, “Youth & Mental Health: Balancing the Wellness Wheel,” generated strategies that will help us guide our students and parents in developing a "whole child” approach to youth mental health and overall wellbeing. Be on the lookout for the post-summit Parent Update on Youth & Mental Health.
PARENT NETWORK CONNECTIONS
One of B-PEN’s primary missions is to provide opportunities for parents to connect with one another regarding some of the common social/emotional issues all our adolescents face as they develop. To complement regular PTO meetings, grade-geared Parent Network get-togethers at each school provide opportunities for helping parents get to know, support and strategize with one another around common developmental concerns. **Check out the Discussion Guides for Parent Networks** created to support Parent Network meetings. For help starting a Parent Network or more information on B-PEN’s offerings and resources, contact B-PEN coordinators June Harris, email@example.com or
Karen Campbell, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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KEEP A HANDLE ON TEST STRESS
With finals coming up at BHS, the stress level at home may start to rise dramatically. What can parents do to help? How can we be supportive without inadvertently adding to the pressure and anxiety? Read B-PEN’s Parent Network Update on Teens and Managing Exam Stress, which features one-page printable Tip Sheets as well as a list of reputable resources to help your teen (and you!) keep a cool head and a focused mind.
BRAINS, BRAVERY & BOTOX BROW
On May 1 at the Devotion School, B-PEN and the Brookline K-8 PTOs sponsored a free program for parents and educators on navigating the tricky middle school years. Educator and social leadership strategist Michelle Icard, author of “Middle School Makeover,” imparted some of the tips and tools she advocates in her book and on her website (www.michelleinthemiddle.com) for helping parents understand and effectively connect with their tweens. Check out some of the takeaways from her talk…
INCREASE IN TEEN DATING VIOLENCE
February 4, 2014 was "It's Time to Talk Day," a national campaign to raise awareness of the issues of domestic and dating violence. Did you know that among Brookline youth, 23 cases of teen dating violence and sexual assault were reported during the past year? Sexual abuse among students is increasing, and even if your teen is not dating or is involved in a healthy relationship, the odds are good that he/she knows someone who is struggling. The issue is even impacting kids at the middle school level, with increased sexual pressure and sexting. Click on our new webpage outlining "What Parents Need to Know."
ALL ABOUT MOLLY
Brookline parents should be on the look-out for a popular new stimulant called “Molly,” which is the crystal or powder form of the chemical found in Ecstasy. It’s been a popular drug at parties and music festivals recently among Brookline youth, who are attracted to its longlasting (6-8 hours) effects and mistakenly believe it is relatively benign. It’s not. Read more…
SPOTLIGHT ON ADDERALL
Did you know that according to a recent national study, 11% of all teens aged 13 to 17 have been prescribed stimulant medication like Adderall or Ritalin for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? That’s a lot of medication floating around, and for those who need it, these drugs can be extremely effective.
But according to a 2012 survey by The Partnership at Drugfree.org, in conjunction with the MetLife Foundation, an additional one in eight teens (13%) now reports that they have taken one of these stimulants when it was not prescribed for them. At BHS, 12% of all seniors admitted to abusing amphetamines not prescribed to them. Reasons ranged from self-medication and weight loss to study aids and recreational use – the sustained “high” from stimulants allows students to party longer.
CLICK HERE to read more...
Drug Free Action Alliance's report...