Wilmington Drug Rehabilitation Industry May Gain Recovery School

Wilmington Drug Rehabilitation Industry May Gain Recovery School

The drug rehabilitation industry in Wilmington, Delaware might soon gain funding needed for a recovery high school for youths struggling with substance abuse in New Castle County.

Recovery high schools are created exclusively for students who need drug rehabilitation, according to the Association of Recovery Schools (ARS).

ARS has three goals when accepting students. They aim to teach students who are recovering from a substance use disorder, ensure that requirements for the state are met for bestowing a diploma and support students in a strong drug rehabilitation program.

Aside from regular school courses, ARS offers individual counseling with a recovery high school expert and access to the entire ARS network of schools. They also provide behavioral management, community engagement, therapeutic and professional growth.

Recovery high schools are an important form of drug rehabilitation for youths in that they not only provide a place for them to recover from a substance abuse, but also a confined environment to avoid the temptations that led them there in the first place.

Adolescents who went to recovery high schools as outpatients would generally fall back to substance abuse when placed back in their old environment, according to a study the U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health.

That same study also indicated that when students entered the recovery high schools, 90 percent of them were using marijuana, alcohol or various other drugs but only 7 percent reported using after exiting the recovery high schools upon completion.  

In 2016, there were 308 people who died from a drug-related overdose in Delaware. Six of those people were between the ages of 10 and 20. In New Castle County, there were 151 people who died of a drug-related overdose and four of those people were between the ages of 10 and 20, according to the Delaware Division of Forensic Science 2016 Annual Report.

There are currently over 45 recovery schools currently in 21 other states but this proposed drug rehabilitation program would be the first in Delaware.

Recovery high schools have flourished in other states and Matt Denn, the Attorney General of Delaware, wants the state to develop a school specifically for adolescents in need. He has recommended $2 million in his 2019 budget request to begin plans of constructing a recovery high school in Delaware.

The Joint Finance Committee — a group of 12 people, six from the House Appropriations Committee and six from the Senate Finance Committee — is considering the budget request and their projections indicated that the recovery high school would cost $500,000.

If the drug rehabilitation program is approved, the recovery high school in Delaware would be public. The school enrollment would start small and then expand as needed.

An organization called atTacK addiction has directed the charge for legislation. Their mission to educate the community about the disease of addiction as all of the founding members lost a relative to a drug overdose.

Denn added that Delaware has come … (Continue Reading)