Posted On September 23, 2022

The second-largest school district in the country is stocking its schools with naloxone, an opioid overdose reversal drug, following student deaths, according to a Thursday news release.

In the recent weeks, nine students have died from overdoses in the Los Angeles Unified School District, with one student overdosing in the bathroom after obtaining a pill containing fentanyl from a peer, according to the Los Angeles Times. Every school in the district, beginning with elementary schools, will be stocked with the nasal spray version of naloxone, or Narcan, according to news release by the school.

“We have an urgent crisis on our hands,” Superintendent Aberto Carvalho said in the press release. “Research shows that the availability of naloxone along with overdose education is effective at decreasing overdoses and death–and will save lives. We will do everything in our power to ensure that not another student in our community is a victim to the growing opioid epidemic. Keeping students safe and healthy remains our highest priority.”

High schools will receive the doses of naloxone first over the next two weeks in addition to nurses and other trained educators, the press release stated.

For the anti-drug initiative, the school is partnering with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the Los Angeles Trust for Children’s Health and the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the press release stated. The school is also creating a safety task force to push peer-to-peer counseling and to provide training and educational materials for families.

Hays Consolidated Independent School District in Kyle, Texas, lost three kids due to overdoses through the summer and in response stocked its nurses’ offices with Narcan, a reversal drug used for fentanyl abuse. The school is preparing to release a series of educational videos on the fentanyl crisis in its community.

“The opioid epidemic is a community crisis, and today Los Angeles Unified is taking concrete action to protect our students — both by making naloxone readily available and through proactive education and support,” Los Angeles Unified School Board President Kelly Gonez said in the press release. “Our Board and Superintendent are committed to doing everything we can to ensure student safety on our campuses and in our communities.”

The Los Angeles Unified School District did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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