TWIN FALLS — A Sawtooth Elementary School fifth-grade student brought a prescription medication from home to school Friday and offered pills to classmates at recess — one of whom consumed the medicine.
Fewer than five students were involved in the incident and the school confirmed one student took the medication, Twin Falls School District spokeswoman Eva Craner said Wednesday.
Sawtooth’s security aide became aware of the situation and intervened, Craner said in a written statement to the Times-News. “The students involved will face consequences in accordance with our discipline policy.”
Sawtooth Elementary will also work with its school resource officer “to provide education about prescription medications and their consequences for their students,” Craner said.
The Twin Falls School District has detailed policies about student medicines and administering medications during the school day. A form must be completed, signed by a physician and turned in for each medication a student is prescribed to take during the school day.
Medication must be in its original container and stored in a school’s office, except for emergency medications a student has been authorized to self-administer.
“Keeping our students safe and healthy is a joint effort between the school and parents,” Craner wrote in the statement. “It is important that parents take time to talk with their children about the importance of proper handling of medications, never taking pills offered to them, and the importance of reporting such incidents to an adult immediately, to help assure safety for all.”
Parents need to talk with their children about prescription medications and how they’re not allowed to distribute them to others, said MaryAnn Doshier, health education specialist at South Central Public Health District.
Some parents assume they only need to talk with their children about not using illegal drugs such as heroin and cocaine, Doshier, said, but they also need to talk about how prescription and over-the-counter medications are only to be used as directed and when needed.
Parents should make sure to keep prescription medications locked up and should hand the proper dosage of a medication to their child — not an entire bottle, Doshier said.
South Central Public Health District will be holding a Facebook live event at 1 p.m. Friday with information about drug and alcohol safety, as well as how to properly dispose of unused prescription medications.
Children often get medications they’re using from family and friends, Doshier said, rather than strangers.