As a parent of two tweens, these numbers are pretty scary. Looks like we have some serious problems when it comes to bullying in Idaho and the teen alcohol consumption isn't much better. 

25.8% of Idaho High School students say they have been bullied on school grounds compared to 19% nationally. When it comes to cyberbullying, 20.3% of Idaho students have been bullied online compared to 14.9% of 9th through 12th graders nationally. This is according to the National Center for Education Statistics, so it's not just some funny little survey. This is a legit problem in our state.

My family moved to Idaho four years ago and to be honest with you, neither one of my children really have friends at school. They have been consistently alone at recess, bullied, and I've seen their fragile little self-esteems suffer greatly. It's been heartbreaking as a Mother and the bullying issue is really the only issue I have had with Idaho, but it's a big problem that can have lasting effects.

The study also looked at weapon possession among High School students in Idaho and found that 9.8% of students have carried a weapon on school grounds in the last 30 days. Nationally the rate is 3.8%. Turns out, kids aren't really bringing guns to school in Idaho but because we live in a big hunting and fishing community they are bringing knives and clubs to school, most likely with no ill intentions.

Looking at drug and alcohol use the article on shows that 9th through 12th graders are drinking alcohol at a rate of about 26% compared to the staggering national average of 30%. Only 16% admitted to using marijuana in the past 30 days. The national average approaches 20%.

Please, have a conversation with your kids about this tonight. If you haven't talked to them about the various forms of bullying, do it now. Set standards for alcohol use and don't allow it to be accessible to your children in your home. We can do better Idaho.

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