National News Roundup
Teen's Drug, Alcohol Use On the Rise, Survey Finds
Drug and alcohol use among the country's teenagers is on the rise, according to an annual federally sponsored survey.
The study, which tracks the use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs by 8th, 10th, and 12th graders, reported that 48.4 percent of high school seniors surveyed had used an illicit drug at least once, up from 45.6 percent in 1994. The rate of alcohol use by seniors reached 80.7 percent, marking a continuing increase since 1993. The study also found that marijuana use among respondents had increased an average of 3.5 percent among all three grades since last year.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released the 21st annual "Monitoring the Future" survey last month. The University of Michigan Institute for Social Research conducts the survey, which was administered to 51,000 students in public and private schools. The study has been conducted annually since 1975.
An executive summary of "Monitoring the Future" is available free of charge from Joyce Buchanan, Institute for Social Research, Room 2311, University of Michigan, P.O. Box 1248, Ann Arbor, Mich., 48106-1248.
Declining College Enrollment
College enrollment is declining, but the drop was more modest this year than in recent years, an annual survey has found.
The American Council of Education's eighth annual college-enrollment report, released last month, showed that half of the 20 states submitting complete data from 1995 experienced decreases in enrollment. That percentage is down from the 65 percent of states last year and 75 percent in 1993 that reported drops in enrollment. Roughly the same number of states participated in the survey in 1993 and 1994.
According to the Washington-based ACE, higher-education officials attribute the enrollment declines to a healthy economy, which encourages potential students to work rather than attend college, and to a shrinking pool of traditional college-age students.
Copies of the "ACE Fall 1995 Enrollment Survey" are available for $8 from the American Council on Education, Publications ES, Dept. 36, Washington, D.C. 20055-0036.