STATEN ISLAND — A Staten Island anti-drug program for students will expand to 47 schools after receiving $70,000 from the mayor, Borough President James Oddo announced.
The "Too Good for Drugs" curriculum partners with the NYPD to try to persuade young students to avoid taking drugs. It started last year in fifth grade classes in five schools, Oddo said.
"We are grateful that the mayor has recognized the value of the curriculum as part of the comprehensive strategy to attack the substance abuse problem that continues to ravage our borough," Oddo said in a statement.
"By utilizing ‘Too Good for Drugs,’ we hope to reach kids while they are still young to teach them how to make responsible decisions and how to refuse peer pressure so that they don’t begin using drugs in the first place."
Aside from the funds from de Blasio, State Sen. Andrew Lanza also allocated $50,000 to the program to help support the NYPD, which has uniformed officers co-teach the classes.
"The reviews are back and the feedback about ‘Too Good for Drugs’ is overwhelmingly positive," Lanza said. "I am happy to help bring this curriculum to as many Staten Island students as possible."
The idea for the program stemmed from Oddo's Advisory Council on Substance Abuse which has been working to curb Staten Island's prescription drug and heroin epidemic.
Between 2000 and 2014, the borough had the highest rate of accidental overdose deaths from pills and heroin in the city, according to the Department of Health.