As a part of the drug and violence prevention campaign, Red Ribbon Week, Macedonia Police and Nordonia Schools are working together to curb the drug epidemic.
News 5 looked into the heroin epidemic plaguing Summit County and new drug testing kits now available for parents.
Principal Casey Wright of Nordonia High School said last week a parent came to his office worried about his son, because he was missing school, his grades were dropping, and he was behaving poorly.
“That's when the question turned to, maybe he's doing some illegal substances,” said Principal Wright.
In preparation for Red Ribbon Week, Principal Wright said he already had a few drug testing kits available, so he gave one to the parent who came to him with concerns.
The "Shield Program" was launched to help with the drug issues. Wright pointed to the statistics. So far this year, Macedonia Police said there were more than 1,200 drug overdoses in Summit County in the first half of 2017. About 15 percent of them were young people.
“It doesn't take a rocket scientist to believe, when you look at the statistics, that it certainly affects all communities, just like it affects Macedonia and Nordonia High School,” said Wright.
The principal said the district reached out to the Macedonia Police Department, which agreed to help pay for the at-home drug kits, so parents can use them to test their kids for drugs for free.
The police department funded 100 of the kits. They are currently at Nordonia Middle and High schools.
As for what happened to that unnamed, concerned father and his son, Principal Wright said emotions always get heated in these types of situations.
“The student was pretty adamant that he was not doing drugs, and the parent was pretty adamant that he was,” he said.
Turns out the student was telling the truth. The test turned out negative.
In cases where the test does turn out positive, parents are advised to go to the hospital for a more comprehensive drug test. The at-home kits are reportedly about 98 percent accurate.
If you have any questions about the Shield Program, you can contact Dr. Deb Wallace at email@example.com.