Officials with the Kentucky Crime Prevention Coalition are traveling the state talking to students about making smart decisions about alcohol and drugs. One instructor says it is less about 'talking' and more about 'showing.'
For these 7th and 8th graders, it's a first-hand look at what it's like to be under the influence.
“It felt weird because everything was going towards the left. And you really couldn't tell where everything was,” says 8th Grader Trevor Kelly.
Wayne Alexander is a youth program coordinator with the Kentucky Crime Prevention Coalition. He is using simulation goggles to show student across the state what it is like to be impaired.
“We want them to make that intelligent decision as young adults, and they're at the stage where they have to start making these decisions, not to get in the vehicle with that person and ride back home,” says Alexander.
Even though these students are not old enough to drink or drive, they still hit an obstacle course and discovered the difficulty of performing field sobriety tests.
“You still have the peers and the people that influence you to drink. So like older brothers or sisters or friends,” says 8th Grader Megan Begley.
“Well you shouldn't drink in the first place because that's kind of dumb and it'll lose your brain cells and everything, so you shouldn't drink while you're driving,” says 8th Grader Nikki Miller.
And it is a message school officials start teaching early.
“We actually start with a program called 'Who's Looking at You?' in Kindergarten. So they getting instructed on drugs, the affects of drugs and alcohol at that young of an age,” says Principal Scott Brown.
He says it is hands-on programs like this one that will reinforce making smart decisions.
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