The Brookline High School Peer Leadership Program promotes strategies to address teen substance and the associated health and risk behaviors. The program is designed around research suggesting that on social issues and decisions adolescents learn more from their peers than from adults. BHS Peer Leaders are committed to improving the health and well-being of their fellow teens and the community as a whole.
Working with B-PEN, the Brookline Parent Education Network, Peer Leaders raise parent awareness about the issues facing teens and how parents can help. Peer Leaders implement school-wide prevention campaigns relating to drugs, alcohol, tobacco, safe driving, teen dating violence and cybersafety. They present at parent meetings and health classes.
Students apply to join the program. They sign a contract to abstain from using alcohol and drugs and to lead through example by making healthy decisions. Peer Leaders act as valuable role models and resources for their peers and younger students. Students meet before school several days a week with Peer Leader Advisor Hope Schroy, a social worker with the Brookline Public Health Department.
BHS 1200 Campaign
In 2005 the BHS Peer leaders introduced the BHS 1200 campaign. This campaign has been highly successful in raising awareness that most students at BHS do not use alcohol on a regular basis. According to the BHS Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), close to 60% — 1200 students — had not used any alcohol or other drugs in the past 30 days. Learn more about the Peer Leaders’ campaigns on safe driving, preventing tobacco use, and healthy relationships.
The Peer Leaders aim to get the message across to their peers that they do not have to drink and smoke pot to have fun. The campaign has featured assemblies, concerts, BHS 1200 Day celebrations, T-shirts (Make it 1201), bracelets, pencils, posters, locker stuffers and public service announcements.