Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Mon, November 12 2012 at 4:13 PM, Updated: Mon, November 12 2012 at 4:25 PM
The head of city schools in Klamath Falls claims more and more medical marijuana is finding its way into schools...however, some believe other prescriptions pose an even bigger threat.
At a recent school board meeting, Klamath Falls City Schools Superintendent Dr. Paul Hillyer cautioned that he's seeing an increase in the amount of medical marijuana in schools - even down to the junior high level...
"From the statistics we have, we believe that it is - because there has been a significant up-tick in the use of marijuana among our students."
That's in contrast with a University of Oregon study released in June.
Benjamin Hansen is an associate professor of economics at U of O...
"In our statistical analysis, we find little evidence that teen drug use increases with the passage of a medical marijuana law within the state."
Dr. Hillyer bases his findings on two sources: "One, student surveys that we do on a yearly basis with both the county and city school systems, and also the expulsion rates for both the city and county schools."
Klamath County Juvenile Department Director Dan Golden believes that in addition to marijuana, prescription painkillers are showing up, and pose an even bigger threat to kids...
"You couple that, with what I'm seeing, is an up-tick in methamphetamine use."
Golden adds that while medical marijuana may be legal, it's up to parents to help keep it out of school...
"Make sure to secure all of their prescriptions, whether it's medical marijuana, or oxycontin."
Dr. Hillyer adds that at this time, the Klamath Falls City School District does not have a policy in place for students who are medical marijuana card holders.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.