Erie County Sheriff's Office
Are you smarter than a drug user?
Alissa Widman Neese
Apr 13, 2014 at 4:30 PM
Parents, pop quiz: Which of these phrases is a slang term for drug use?
A. “Candy flipping.”
B. “Chasing the dragon.”
Correct choice: All of the above.
If you didn’t ace the test, don’t fret — Operation: Street Smart is offering two crash courses in drug culture this month.
The drug abuse awareness program, coordinated by the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, will visit two area high schools this month for public presentations.
Sgt. Mike Powell, a retired Franklin County deputy, will lead the discussion.
It’s designed to educate parents, teachers and the broader community about current drug trends, terminology and paraphernalia.
The public presentations, mainly geared toward parents, are 6-8 p.m., at Edison High School on April 15 and at Margaretta High School on April 22.
During the school day, the program will host separate events for students, with a greater focus on the harmful effects of drug usage.
“It’s not about going in trying to scare them, it’s about giving them the truth,” Powell said. “I’m not there as a law enforcement officer to find out who’s doing what. I’m there as an educator.”
Operation: Street Smart is an award-winning program that has been presented at conferences across the world, as well as hundreds of schools and other organizations. The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office created the grant-funded effort in 2002.
Since then, local agencies have partnered with Franklin County deputies often to bring their knowledge to the region.
This year’s series kicked off at EHOVE Career Center on Tuesday, where principal Rodney Smith said it was well-received.
Erie County deputy Nick Mazur, EHOVE’s school resource officer, assisted during the session and will also be at the two presentations later this month, Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth said.
“Communication and education are vital components for the prevention of the ongoing issues we see in the community involving drug addiction,” Sigsworth said. “We hope that through this collaboration we can communicate the reality of the situation.”
Want to go?
WHAT: Operation: Street Smart drug abuse awareness presentation
WHEN and WHERE: 6-8 p.m. April 15, Edison High School auditorium, 2613 Ohio 113 East, Milan; 6-8 p.m. April 22, Margaretta High School library, 209 Lowell St., Castalia
For more information, join the “Operation: Street Smart” Facebook group.