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Home > Recovery schools for improving well-being among students in recovery from substance use: a systematic review.

Hennessy, Emily A and Tanner-Smith, Emily E and Finch, Andrew J and Sathe, Nila A and Potter, Shannon A (2018) Recovery schools for improving well-being among students in recovery from substance use: a systematic review. Campbell Systematic Reviews , 14 .

URL: https://www.campbellcollaboration.org/library/reco...


What is this review about?

Based on the results of one study, RHSs (recovery high schools) may reduce high school students’ school absenteeism, marijuana use, and other drug use, and increase abstinence from drugs; but RHSs may be no better or worse than other high schools in improving grades, reducing truancy, or reducing alcohol use. It is unclear whether CRCs are effective in promoting academic success and reducing substance use among college students.

 

What are the main findings of this review?

Sizable portions of youth are in recovery from substance use disorders, and many youth will return to use after receiving substance use treatment. Youth spend most of their waking hours at school, and thus schools are important social environments for youth in recovery from substance use disorders. Recovery schools have been identified as educational programs that may help support youth in recovery from substance use disorders. This review focused on two types of recovery schools: RHSs, which are schools that award secondary school diplomas and offer a range of therapeutic services in addition to standard educational curricula; and CRCs, which offer therapeutic and sober support services on college campuses. This review looked at whether recovery schools (RHSs or CRCs) affect academic success and substance use outcomes among students, compared to similar students who are not enrolled in recovery schools.

 

What do the findings of this review tell us?

Findings from this review indicate insufficient evidence on the effects of recovery schools on student well-being. Although there is some indication RHSs may improve academic and substance use outcomes, this is based on the findings from a single study. There is no available evidence on the effects of CRCs. No strong conclusions can be drawn at this time, given the lack of available evidence on RHSs and CRCs, and the serious risk of bias in the one RHS study included in the review. The evidence from this review suggests there is a clear need for additional rigorous evaluations of recovery school effects prior to widespread implementation.

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