Year 3: Brighter Futures for Florence Families: Youth and Parent Education for Substance UseAbuse Prevention

Project: Research project

Description

(1). Executive Summary: Brighter Futures for Florence Families: Youth and Parent Education for Substance Use/Abuse Prevention is the title for the project that will target the population of 6th, 7th and 8th grade students in four schools in the Florence Unified School District and also the parents of these youth who participate in a companion parent education program. The strategy is to offer both youth and parents evidence-based interventions that have already been proven effective to reduce drug use, to increase resiliency, and to establish anti-drug norms, attitudes and beliefs. The project approach will pair keepin it REAL, an intervention created for and proven effective among middle-school adolescents with Families Preparing a New Generation, a parents program developed as an adjunct to keepin it REAL to improve family functioning as youth and parents learn health promoting information and gain resistance skills. The anticipated outcome of presenting both programs simultaneously in a school setting is to enhance the overall effectiveness of both interventions to increase resilience, reduce youth drug and alcohol use, and develop stronger families. The Florence Unified School District (FUSD) provides a rural setting encompassing the city of Florence and part of the San Tan Valley. FUSD began implementing these programs last year in collaboration with the Southwest Interdisciplinary Research Center (SIRC) at Arizona State University. Seed money from the Parents Commission started these programs this spring, and FUSD and SIRC would like to continue and expand these efforts to four schools rather than two, while seeking sustainability over the next three years. Both programs were developed and tested by SIRC staff who will be the contractors and providers of funding, training and evaluation services, with the district and schools as the implementers. Current efforts in the two schools impact 625 students, 60 parents and 25 teachers; it is anticipated that this funding would impact 1,300 students and 120 to150 parents. The focus areas for the Brighter Futures project include enhancing and increasing parental involvement with their adolescents by involving the parents directly in a Parent Education Program, Families Preparing a New Generation, which includes a substance abuse prevention component including increasing parental knowledge, awareness, resistance skills and communication skills for use in parenting. The other four focus areas, Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention, Underage Drinking Prevention (alcohol), Marijuana/Synthetic Marijuana Abuse Prevention, and Synthetic Drug Prevention (bath salts, spice, gold, etc.) are addressed in both the parent and youth curricula that enhance positive attitudes and increase resiliency to prevent drug use/abuse. The goals and objectives are to Increase youth resiliency by protecting against substance use of all types and risky behaviors; specifically students in grades 6, 7,& 8 will increase their ability to resist drugs by 3% using each of the REAL strategies and will increase their anti-drug norms by 5% each year for three years; and Provide family support by helping parents to communicate with their children about the risks of substance use by increasing family communication skills; specifically, parents of students in grades 6, 7,& 8 will increase their ability help their children to resist drugs by 3% using each of the REAL strategies and will increase their ability communicate with their children to resist drugs by 5%.

Description

Brighter Futures for Florence Families: Youth and Parent Education for Substance Use/Abuse Prevention is the title for the project that targets the population of 6th, 7th and 8th grade students in four schools in the Florence Unified School District and also the parents of youth in these schools who are invited to participate in a companion parent education program. This reapplication is for year 3 funding from the Arizona Parents Commission and the Governors Office for Children, Youth and Families.
The strategy is to offer both youth and parents evidence-based and evidence-informed interventions to prevent and interrupt child abuse and reduce substance abuse. The project approach will integrate Childhelps curriculum Speak Up Be Safe (SUBS) with keepin it REAL (kiREAL) for the students and Families Preparing a New Generation (FPNG) for the parents. SUBS is a research based, comprehensive prevention education curriculum for children and their parents/caregivers to prevent or interrupt child abuse and neglect. kiREAL is a substance abuse intervention created for and proven effective among middle-school adolescents, and Families Preparing a New Generation (FPNG) is the parent program that helps improve family functioning. The programs will be referred to as kiREAL+SUBS and FPNG+SUBS. Since child abuse and neglect are strongly related to substance abuse issues, the marrying of these topics into a school-based prevention program will create positive outcomes.
The Florence Unified School District (FUSD) provides a rural setting encompassing the city of Florence and part of the San Tan Valley. FUSD began implementing these programs three years ago in collaboration with the Southwest Interdisciplinary Research Center (SIRC) at Arizona State University. Current efforts in these four schools impact 1,131 students, 43 parents and 35 teachers, facilitators and administrators; it is anticipated that this funding would impact 1,300 students and 120 to150 parents.
The focus areas for the Brighter Futures project include enhancing and increasing parental involvement with their adolescents by involving the parents directly in a Parent Education Program, Families Preparing a New Generation, which includes a substance abuse prevention component including increasing parental knowledge, awareness, resistance skills and communication skills for use in parenting. This program will now also be providing child abuse/neglect prevention education. Further, the program will serve as an alternative to suspension program for the district.
The goals are to Increase youth resiliency by protecting against substance use of all types and risky behaviors, provide family support by helping parents to communicate with their children about the risks of substance use by increasing family communication skills, and build school district and community capacity with teachers, staff, administrators, and parents. The objectives target three groups: youth, parents or caregivers, and teachers/staff.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date7/1/156/30/16

Funding

  • Arizona Office of the Governor: Office of Youth, Faith and Family (GOYFF): $295,175.00

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youth education
parent education
parents
school
district
abuse
drug
substance abuse
interdisciplinary research
communication skills
student
school grade
funding
adolescent
neglect
family program
teacher
staff
caregiver
drug use