The latest news, events and updates from the San Marino USD
September 22, 2022
Message from the Superintendent
Public Health Warning (Fentanyl)
Dear Parents and Community,

I’m writing to you this evening to share that the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health recently issued a Public Health Warning LACDPH Health Warning related to the September 13 fentanyl overdose of four students from Bernstein High School in Hollywood.  One student died as a result of the incident, and the other three students needed to be hospitalized. Fentanyl and methamphetamine-related overdose deaths have increased in Los Angeles County even prior to the pandemic and continue to rise at an alarming rate.

Nationwide, there has been a growing trend of illicit drugs, including counterfeit pills, laced with fentanyl and other life-threatening substances being sold to adolescents. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, fentanyl has been identified in close to 79% of adolescent overdose deaths nationally, and over 80% of drug overdose deaths among adolescents aged 15 – 19 were found to be unintentional. It is important to know that fentanyl is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine or heroin and can be deadly.

Please talk with your children about the dangers of fentanyl and other illicit drugs. If your child or someone you know is addicted to fentanyl or other drugs that could be contaminated with fentanyl, the best thing you can do is to connect them to professional help as expeditiously as possible.  Here are links to resources that may help:

If you suspect a fentanyl overdose, you should call 911 immediately. The onset of an overdose caused by fentanyl can occur much quicker (sometimes within seconds) than heroin. In most cases, fentanyl overdoses appear very similar to other opioid overdoses. However, atypical overdose symptoms due to fentanyl have been reported, including:

  • Immediate blue or grey lips
  • Body stiffening/seizure-like activity
  • Foaming at the mouth
  • Confusion before becoming unresponsive

Our student’s health and safety are of utmost importance to us. SMUSD administrators, teachers, and staff will remain vigilant in keeping drugs away from our campuses. If you have any questions or concerns about this, please do not hesitate to reach out to our District nurse, Mrs. Roslyn Nott, R.N. She can be reached at (626) 299-7000.