ERIC Number: ED339580
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Alcohol Use and Abuse in a Rural School.
Agnello-Linden, Mary Frances
Student responses were elicited in classroom discussions about alcohol use in their own rural community. Teachers and parents responded to questionnaires and interviews concerning various aspects of alcohol consumption as part of the local lifestyle. Students gave reasons for drinking such as ethnic and religious acceptance in the local community, parental permissiveness, and lack of parental supervision. Many students focused on the idea of social drinking as opposed to addictive drinking. They reported a general lack of police enforcement of underage drinking laws. Some students knew serious drinkers and described a family tendency toward alcoholism. Students usually obtained alcohol by asking people to buy it for them or by using fake identification. The 10 teachers interviewed agreed that students began drinking at early ages largely due to peer pressure. Alcohol was seen as readily accessible to teens who had too much idle time. Teachers expressed belief that alcohol affects student performance in school, self-concept, and discipline both at home and in school. There was general consensus that alcohol has profound effects on families, ranging from divorce, uncomfortable home environment, and alienation, to economic instability. Contrary to student and teacher reports, parents reported that they and their children did not drink at home or away from home. Most parents felt that the use of alcohol by youth did affect the family and community, and that the family affected an individual's decision to drink more than other circumstances did. The findings in this study correspond closely with the findings of a state survey of alcohol and drug use in Texas. (KS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the National Rural Education Association (Jackson, MS, October 10-14, 1991).