KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Marijuana was recently found in three Kennewick schools in the span of two days. According to police, drugs were found at Kennewick High School, Highlands Middle School, and Amistad Elementary School.
KNDU spoke with school administrators throughout the area to see if the issue of illegal drugs is becoming a problem among younger students, of if these were isolated events.
Drugs being found in school is nothing new. High schools are known for it more; but when the drugs are found in a elementary and middle school around the same time, some may wonder if that is telling of a bigger problem.
Ron Williamson, with the Kennewick School District says, "I would say it's just a coincidence you should have three that close together from three different levels. You typically don't see elementary kids involved in marijuana. That's an aberration, that's unusual."
An unusual event that occurred where the youngest participants were only nine years old. According to Kennewick Police Sergeant, Ken Lattin, the problem stems from a more personal place.
"So the elementary kids, where are they getting it from? They're getting it from home. People at home are smoking it, are using it, are buying it, even selling it. That's where it's coming from. It's not so much a school problem. It is a school problem, but the problem is at home."
An investigation is currently underway into where the students got the drugs. School administrators applaud the quick action of the schools in reporting the incidents, but say these issues are not part of a bigger problem.
"I don't know if we've seen any more or any less than we typically see. Drugs is just one of those things, just like gangs, you have community problems. We see those issues, and they will typically spill into your schools. When they do we have policies and procedures for dealing with illegal activities in school, and marijuana on campus is a illegal activity," says Williamson.
School administrators from the Pasco and Richland School Districts were unable to release information regarding drug abuse in time for this report, but Pasco says there have been no increase in drug related incidents.