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WINDHAM, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Drug and alcohol education is already a part of the curriculum, but Windham Middle School is tackling the issue in an innovative way: discussion drug abuse over dinner.

The school held a spaghetti supper and invited eighth grade students and their parents to a program after school.

With help from the Opportunity Alliance, Windham Police, and school officials, students and parents learned about drugs and alcohol Tuesday night in a "Windham Wants to Know" program.

While parents heard a presentation from a substance abuse specialist, students broke away and had a discussion with RSU 14 High School students.

"They can hear from high school kids that it is okay to go over there to the high school and not use," said Community Services Officer Matt Cyr.

Substance Abuse Specialist Liz Blackwell-Moore said she gives these talks regularly, but tonight was in a different format.

"It's formal, and informal," said Blackwell-Moore. "I think it will be really effective."

She told parents that 24 percent of RSU 14 high school students surveyed said they drank alcohol in the last 30 days, and 22 percent said they had marijuana.

By putting on this program at the middle school, officials hope to curb those statistics and continue to reduce drug use in the district.

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