Alcohol is illegal to buy or possess if you are under age 21. It is a central nervous system depressant affecting virtually every organ in the body. It blocks the messages going to your brain and alters your perception and emotions, vision, hearing and coordination.  Alcohol lowers inhibitions and impairs judgment, which can lead to risky behaviors.  The relationship between alcohol and motor vehicle crashes is widely acknowledged. In addition, alcohol use can lead to the abuse of other substances.



    It is illegal for anyone under the age of 19 to purchase tobacco products (Including E-cigarettes) because cigarette smoking is highly addictive and can cause diseases like emphysema, heart disease, stroke, and cancer, even premature death. Smoking is particularly dangerous for teens because their bodies are still developing and changing. Use of cigarettes can lead to the abuse other substances.  Besides that, it makes your breath smell bad and makes your teeth turn yellow!



    It is illegal to buy or sell marijuana because it is highly dangerous. Marijuana affects your judgment, drains your motivation and can make you feel anxious. It affects your self-control, including your sense of time and coordination, leading to burns, falls and car crashes. It can be laced with other dangerous drug and substances without your knowledge. “Blunts” – hollowed out cigars filled with marijuana – sometimes have substances such as cocaine, PCP, or embalming fluid added. Despite popular perception, you can become addicted to marijuana and smoking marijuana is even worse than smoking tobacco. One joint affects the lungs as much as four cigarettes.



    The abuse of ordinary household products can cause severe consequences including permanent brain damage, loss of muscle control and destruction of the heart, blood, kidney, liver and bone marrow. Inhalant abuse can kill; it can kill suddenly and it can kill those who sniff for the first time.



    Cocaine and crack are illegal and highly addictive. Even first time users may experience seizures or heart attacks, which can be fatal. People using crack and cocaine can do risky things they later regret. Car crashes, falls, burns, drowning and suicide are all linked to drug use.



    Prescription medication provides many benefits when used correctly under a doctor’s care. When abused of used incorrectly they are as dangerous as illicit drugs especially when combined with alcohol and other illicit drugs. It can kill you! It is illegal for someone to take or use someone else’s prescription medication.

  • New Jersey's Good Samaritan and Hold Harmless Laws protect people who seek help for victims of overdose or alcohol poisoning.

    If you suspect someone is overdosing from illegal drugs, prescription drugs or alcohol, call emergency or medical personnel immediately. 

    Stay on the phone with the 911 operator and wait until the emergency services arrive. Do not leave the person unattended.
    The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Public School District does not advocate or encourage the underage consumption of alcohol, the use of illegal drugs, or abuse of prescription drugs. If you have any questions, please contact your local police department.



    Scotch Plains Police Department   (908)322-7100

    Fanwood Police Department    (908)322-5000

  • The Substance Awareness/Student Assitance Coordinator in collaboration with other school staff puts intervention components into place. Early intervention, crisis intervention and aftercare opportunities are provided by the Student Assistance Counselor for students and families on an individual basis. Short-term in school counseling is provided by ensure a continuous quality of services for students and families when necessary relating to the following issues:

    Substance use and abuse
    Aftercare support
    Behavioral issues
    Relationship issues
    Family issues
    Stress management
    Bereavement and grief issues
    Divorce and Separation issues
    Eating Disorders
    Diverstiy and Tolerance

    Educational Student Support Groups
    Student support and problem-solving informational skills based groups are provided to students who are at-risk or experiencing academic or social problems. The groups are co-facilitated by the Student Assistance Counselor, School Counselors and other school staff. These groups are created based on an individual school identified need.

    Integration with Other School-Based Programs
    The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Substance Awareness/Student Assistance Program works to integrate student assistance services with other school-based programs designed to increase resilience, improve academic performance and resilience, improve academic performance and reduce student risk for alcohol, tobacco, other drugs and violence.

  • District Policy