But (s)he’s only 17!

So, your recent Grade 12 grad is packing up their entire bedroom and moving into residence for their first year of postsecondary education. An exciting time for them and for you. That is, until you start to read about Frosh Week and what type of activities are planned! Pub crawl? Frosh pit? Beer tent? Kegger? But they’re only 17!

The reality is, with Grade 13 being eliminated more than five years ago, most high school students who graduate from grade 12 are underage when they head off to college or university. The legal drinking age for alcohol in Ontario is 19 – so how are postsecondary schools handling this? It is a good question to ask the school your child will be attending, but as a parent you can also play a crucial role in preparing them.

What kinds of situations might they face in the coming weeks? How are they going to handle it? What supports can you provide them long distance? Even if you’ve never talked to your child about alcohol and drugs, now is the time to start a conversation and to keep up the dialogue even after they’ve moved away.

Author: Diane RN

I'm a Registered Nurse working as a Public Health Nurse with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit

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