Printable reference of the state and local laws regarding youth and substances.



Cannabis policy is ahead of the cannabis science. We need more research to understand the benefits and the harms. Click link for review of all the research (about 50% of all studies suggest some helpful use).



Here’s a printable PDF booklet with tips for families, including social host laws, talking points, and resources!

Thank you to Youth Health Connection for preparing this helpful resource!


Print event flyer: 3.27.18TeenBrain

The Scituate FACTS Coalition is delighted to welcome Dr. Sion Kim Harris for an annual presentation on adolescent brain development and the effect of substance use. Dr. Harris will review the latest science that every parent and student should know about adolescent brain development. Participants will learn how the brain responds to alcohol and marijuana in particular, as well as habits that promote healthy brain function and development.

Dr. Harris is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and faculty in the Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine and Developmental Medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital. She is a senior research scientist at the Center for Adolescent Substance Addiction Research ( at Boston Children’s, an internationally-renowned research center which strives to be a leading source of innovative, effective strategies in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of substance-related problems.

So what’s the big deal about trying substances? “Well thanks to MRIs, we now know that the developing adolescent brain responds to experiences. This can either be bad news or good news,” according to Annmarie Galvin, FACTS Coalition Co-Chair. “One of the biggest risk factors for developing a problem with substances later in life – be it opiates, alcohol, or something else – is the age of first use. Starting early – with anything, even nicotine- increases an individual’s chances of developing a serious problem. Attendees will learn more about this important risk factor by looking at images and reviewing scientific research with Dr. Harris. It’s quite fascinating to learn a new way of looking at addiction from a science perspective. For me, it removes all of the bad choices and morality talk from the addiction conversation. So much of this disease is brain related. Understanding the science of early use is compelling.”

At the March 27 event, local statistics and identified areas of concern will also be presented by Scituate High School students. The coalition remains concerned about high school binge drinking, marijuana use, and the frequency with which our young people ride in a car with someone who had been drinking. Scituate rates are similar to the state and national averages in many categories. However the risky health behavior of heavy episodic drinking – having more than 5 drinks in a row – among local high school students is higher than the state average, and increasing. According to last year’s anonymous survey, 27% Scituate High School students report this risk behavior in the past 30-days, compared to 18% of high school students across the state and the nation (2017, SHS Youth Risk Behavior Survey). In addition to potential long-term impacts, we know that risky decisions may be made anytime someone is under the influence of substances. Our school community would like to take this opportunity before prom and graduation season to empower families with information to celebrate safely.

A special note for Scituate High School Juniors and their Parents and Caregivers:
Please arrive by 6:30pm to hear expectations and logistics for the Junior Prom on May 18. Junior students in attendance will be entered into a free raffle drawing. Students must be present win. Prizes will be raffled off at the end of the program and include prizes such as two prom tickets (raffled separately), hair styling, tux rental, make-up and more. The FACTS Coalition appreciates the generous support of the small business community as we work together to make the prom and graduation season safe and memorable for our young people. Discounted prom tickets ($10 off) will also available for purchase after the program for students who attend the educational forum on March 27th. This ticket discount is made possible by generous donations to our coalition from BeWell Studios Friday night community classes.
All communities are welcome to attend this free program. Content is appropriate for ages 12 and up.

Invite your friends via Facebook

The Scituate Recreation Department is pleased to announce FREE FUN FRIDAYS! In partnership with Scituate Public Schools, the Scituate FACTS Coalition, and Scituate Police, Recreation staff will offer a variety of activities for students in grades 6 – 8 in the Gates Gymnasium and Dining Commons immediately after school. With thanks to Gates PTO and Jack Conway Realtors for their financial support, this program is free to attend.

Based on interest and capacity, we may continue similar programming in the future. Your feedback is welcome at any time, as well as at the next FACTS Open Coalition Meeting where we will discuss the pilot in-depth (Wed 3/21, 6:30-8:00pm at the Scituate Town Library).


How do we sign up?
Registration is not required. This is a drop-in recreation program scheduled for 2/9/18, 2/16/18, 2/23/18, 3/2/18, 3/9/18, 3/16/18 and 3/23/18.  All participants must complete a new waiver prior to attending their first session:
Signed waivers may be returned to their homeroom teacher, dropped in the basket in the Gates Main Office, or brought to program Check-In.

Does my child need to bring a waiver each time?
No. Signed waivers will be kept on file for the duration of the program. Participants will check in with a Recreation staff member each week, in the Dining Commons.

How will dismissal work?
The program ends at 4:00pm, and parent/guardians are not required to sign participants out. Please inform a staff member if your child needs to leave early.

My son or daughter has food allergies. What are you serving?
Light snacks including Skinny Pop popcorn, and Cheese and Gluten-Free Cheese Pizza from Papa Gino’s will be available for free in the Dining Commons. No outside food is allowed.

How will you contact me in the event of an emergency?
A member of the Gates School administration will be onsite for the duration of the program in case access to emergency contact/medical information is needed.

Will FREE FUN FRIDAY take place over February vacation week?Yes. Gates will be open for regular program on February 23, 2018, from 2:00-4:00pm.

What if it snows?
Scituate Recreation programs follow the Scituate Public Schools cancellation policy. If school is cancelled, FREE FUN FRIDAY is cancelled.

May I volunteer?
We appreciate the enthusiastic support from our community! For safety reasons, Scituate Recreation will oversee trained recreation staff and other employees of the Town of Scituate for the current program.

If you would like to contribute toward supplies or program costs for this pilot session, please contact Nick Lombardo at

Print waiver:


Print flyer: FREE FUN FRIDAY


Pictured here are students and alumni from our local recovery high school, Independence Academy ( As part of our comprehensive curriculum, young people in recovery share their stories of addiction, treatment and recovery with students during 9th/10th grade health class.

Download printable PDF document of our Substance Misuse Prevention curriculum here:



In addition to the local resource sheet, all students will receive a paper copy of a Drug Facts/informational brochure: