Schools

‘A wake-up call’: Revere teachers sound alarm after fentanyl discovered at high school

"The RTA is demanding that this troubling discovery of a deadly drug in our high school serve as the moment to begin a thorough, ongoing and transparent process to address school safety."

The Revere Teachers Association is speaking out after fentanyl was discovered in a classroom at Revere High School this week, and is urging the community to use the incident as a “wake up call” to address safety issues in local schools.

In an email to parents, Revere High school Principal Christopher Bowen said a small baggie with an “unknown substance” was found on the floor of a classroom, according to NBC 10 Boston. The substance was then tested and the results found it contained fentanyl, the potent synthetic opioid that can be deadly even in small doses.

Bowen wrote school administrators do not believe any students consumed it.

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“We are currently investigating this incident with the help of the Revere Police … We are working with the police department to plan next steps to ensure there are not drugs in our schools,” Superintendent Dr. Dianne Kelly wrote in a statement.

According to school officials, in response, the district is working with the Revere Department of Substance Use Disorder and Homeless Initiatives to create programs for students, families, and the larger city community, the news station reports.

The Revere Teachers Association, which touts a membership of 650 school staffers, said the discovery of fentanyl at the school “must serve as a wake-up call to our entire school community, and community at large.”

“The RTA is demanding that this troubling discovery of a deadly drug in our high school serve as the moment to begin a thorough, ongoing and transparent process to address school safety,” the association said in a statement. “The RTA is urging school administrators, educators, parents and caregivers to come together and establish both goals and strategies to ensure our students and staff are learning and working in safe, supportive environments.”

The association said its members have voiced concerns about safety and the “overall culture and climate” in Revere schools for several months.

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“The impact of the pandemic on our students and their families cannot be underestimated,” the statement added. “If we do not address the social and emotional needs of our students, we will not be as successful in meeting their academic needs. Now is the time to put in place the necessary programs and staffing — teachers, para-educators, counselors, librarians, nurses and support staff — to have schools where students and educators alike feel safe and supported and capable of doing their best work.”

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