Southeastern PA

Upper Bucks report reflects life and times of local teens

Upper Bucks report reflects life and times of local teens

The 2014 version of a report called the "Upper Bucks Student Support Card" is a snapshot of local teenagers' lives, their triumphs and their struggles.

According to the 2014 Student Support Card, teenagers in the Quakertown, Pennridge and Palisades schools districts have more developmental assets than ever before to help them make positive life choices.

These assets include family and community support along with positive internal values and motivation.

"The more assets a person has the less likely they are to be involved in alcohol use, to be involved in other drug use, to be involved in sexual activity at a young age," said Ray Fox, an Upper Bucks Coalition member.

But at the same time, this year's survey of more than 2,700 middle and high school students revealed some of them continue to struggle with those issues.

Eighth graders reported a 25 percent increase in alcohol use.

One in three seniors admitted to binge drinking.

Forty-eight percent of seniors say they've had sex.

"I was kind of shocked at the heroin use I wasnt aware of that at all," said Paige Scholl, a Palisades high School junior.

"You can celebrate without having a beer or alcohol or drugs there is no reason for it," said Pete Psomiadis, a Pennridge High student.

The biannual survey has been conducted by the Upper Bucks Healthy Communities, Healthy Youth Coalition since 2002.

The coalition says it's a snapshot communities can use to chart a positive course in teens' lives, but these teens say it's a call to action...

"I have great support, I have great family, I have great friends in the community that are always helping me to stay out of that so for me it's my most important job to be that same light," said Maddie Mulhall, a Quakertown High School senior.

The coalition is encouraging community members to become an asset by reading the support card on its web site

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