CINCINNATI — Some of the nation's fourth-grade students have already started drinking beer and wine coolers or sniffing inhalants on a monthly basis, a national organization that monitors drug use among youths reported Wednesday.
In a self-reported survey of 26,086 fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade students nationwide, some fourth-graders said they had used cigarettes (4.1%), beer (7.7%) and inhalants (6.3%).
Of those fourth-graders, 2.1% said they drink beer, 2.2% drink wine coolers and 2.2% use inhalants on a monthly basis.
The use of cigarettes increased to 7% in the fifth grade and 14.8% in the sixth grade, while use of beer rose to 8.2% in the fifth grade and to 15% in the sixth grade, according to the survey by the Atlanta-based organization Parents' Resource Institute for Drug Education.
The survey was released as the organization began a conference in Cincinnati. It was the organization's first nationwide look at drug and alcohol use by youngsters.