Many juniors and seniors at Gilmour are preparing for a very exciting prom. However, it is important to be sensible about the potential risks that high profile events can present.

Making safe choices should be an easy task, yet in this world today, it is not so simple. People are greatly influenced by the media and peer pressure to do things that can have destructive consequences.

On Tuesday, April 26, the seniors took a trip to learn about making safe decisions in the future. The trip took most of the day with the seniors getting back during C4. The program was put together by the Chagrin Falls Police Department, and included some surrounding areas. Speakers who have been in trouble for drinking and driving shared their stories. Instead of telling children not to drink and drive, the speakers revealed the results of drinking and driving. Some of the speakers were the parents of children who had been killed by a drunk driver or who had been
severely injured in drunk driving related accidents. driving related accidents.

Mr. Teisl, Dean of Student Life and Discipline, “The most powerful moment of the program was when the students had to exit the church by walking through a line of parents who were holding pictures of their dead children. It may be your choice to drink and drive, but unfortunately it’s not always your life.” Especially because the seniors will be going to college next year, it is critical that they make good decisions now.

The potential for drunk driving on any prom night is a national concern. Students here share the common concern. “Prom is a fun time and it shouldn’t be ruined by people drinking and driving,” says Steve Greco (`11).

According to national statistics, every day at least eight teenagers die in drunk driving related accidents and 60% of teen deaths that occur in car accidents are drunk driving caused or related. These are national facts. The concern with drunk driving related accidents is everywhere, not only in Ohio.

An alcoholic beverage contains ethanol, and alcohol itself is a type of psychoactive drug which also has a depressant effect. Drinking large amounts of alcohol can cause both short and long term consequences. Some short term effects are intoxication, dehydration, and lethargy. Some long term effects are alcoholism, changes in the metabolism, liver disease, and dementia.

Many organizations, such as MADD, are preparing informational campaigns about drunk driving. MADD stands for Mothers against Drunk Driving and was founded by Candy Lightner in 1980 after her daughter was killed by a drunk driver. Ever since, MADD has been very influential in preventing drunk driving. To avoid demonizing prom with the potential for drunk driving, they offer logical solutions such as choosing not to drink and drive or simply choosing not to drink.

Many schools are taking this matter into their own hands. Some schools form rallies and meetings to teach students what happens when someone drinks and drives. Some schools are trying to increase security at the prom and are more avid in issuing breathalyzer tests to any student at the prom. Schools are only doing this to keep the students safe and to try and prevent accidents which not only endanger the students but also citizens of the community.

Prom is a great way to celebrate junior and senior year, but it should also be enjoyed with responsibility.

Senior students are not the only ones who are working on making good decisions. For the majority of the first semester, the freshmen were learning about the danger of alcohol by participating in a program that taught about the dangers of drinking too much alcohol. This program was concluded with some activities with the Gates Mills Police Department. During this time, the freshmen learned about how drinking and driving can relate to accidents, what drinking and driving can cause, how getting caught drinking and driving can affect your driving privileges in the future, how alcohol itself can impair the body and the senses, and what alcohol does to a person after both a short and long period of time.

Gilmour really wants students to make good decisions both now and in the future. For more information, students are encouraged to ask questions.