“Substance abuse is a major obstacle preventing some adults from realizing their potential. We want our students to avoid this path and lead healthy, happy and productive lives,” said Phil Alfano, superintendent of PJUSD. “Education is the key; not just in academic terms. Educating students about risky behaviors that will have negative consequences is the responsibility of parents and teachers working together.”
Throughout the week, students were encouraged to take part in a variety of activities, primarily dressing up for the occasion. At Apricot Valley and Northmead Elementary, students were encouraged to wear red and state their pledge together as school-wide initiative. Patterson High School and Del Puerto High School also took part in the initiative, and wore plenty of costumes to parlay the anti-drug themes, including “Lei off drugs,” where students were encouraged to wear Hawaiian attire, and “Give alchohol the boot,” where students dressed in cowboy getup.
Red Ribbon Week is dedicated to Federal drug enforcement agent Enrique Camarena, who was killed by drug traffickers in Mexico in 1985. As a result of his death, parents and community members across the country began wearing red ribbons to symbolize their commitment towards creating a drug-free America.