By Bob Weaver

Calhoun school board members heard a report on smoking, snuff rubbing and chewing in Calhoun Middle and High School last night. Nearly half of all Calhoun High School students reported smoking in the past year, according to Jane Lynch, Director of Federal Programs for the county.

The data was collected in a survey conducted in May, 2002, with the information obtained from students, identities remain confidential.

The report said 17.6% of Calhoun Middle students and 12.9% of Calhoun High students reported they began before ten years of age.

It said 35.6% of all 6th to 8th grade Middle Schools students and 48.7% of all Calhoun High students have smoked within the past year.

Of students who reported smoking sometime during the year, 21.9% of Middle School students and 40.6% Calhoun High students smoked before and after school. 11.3% Middle School students and 17.2% Calhoun High students smoke weeknights. 20.6% Calhoun Middle students and 24.7% reported smoking on weekends.

Of those surveyed, 38.4% Calhoun Middle and 54.7% Calhoun High students said it is very easy to get cigarettes.

Of those surveyed, 36.4% Middle School and 51.5% Calhoun High students report it is very easy to get smokeless tobacco, snuff or chewing tobacco.

Another report will be delivered to county principals this week regarding other risk behaviors, according to Lynch.

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