Forum set to discuss teen issues

Organizations team up to find ways to aid parents

— Steamboat Springs High School is partnering with a local prevention association to find ways to help parents deal with issues that local teens face every day.

The school district and Grand Futures Prevention Coalition have invited several organizations to a meeting to talk about ways parents can tackle issues such as vandalism, threats, bullying, drugs, alcohol and sex.

"We want to generate conversation about ways we can build partnerships between parents and the high school and (between) the community and the high school to deal with issues students face," said Cyndy Simms, superintendent of the Steamboat school district.

Agencies that have been invited to help organize a parental outreach program include Partners in Routt County, Colorado Mountain College, Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association, Young Life, Rocky Mountain Youth Corps, Juvenile Diversion and Advocates Against Battering and Abuse.

Officials from the Steamboat Springs Police Department and the Routt County Sheriff's Office have also been invited to the meeting, which is at 4 p.m. today at Steamboat Springs High School, 45 Maple St.

The school and the coalition will discuss ways to get parents together to discuss topics that may include recent events and student behavior in and outside of school.

"We are trying to come up with a program that gives parents an outlet to help them with issues," said Brooke Lachman, project manager for Grand Futures. "Parents have expressed they would like a little more support."

One issue the group will discuss is the concept of getting parents together in small groups.

Simms said a family can host such a meeting in its home and invite neighbors to talk about issues.

This is not the first time the high school and Grand Futures have teamed up.

A few years ago, high school students and the coalition held a number of community forums for residents to discuss youth activities.

The school district and the organization also work together to survey students about alcohol and drug use.

"We have had a number of successful ventures with Grand Futures," Simms said. "This time, we are going to take a different approach."

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