Texas now requires your kid’s school to have Narcan: Here’s how it works

HOUSTON – It’s the drug that could save your child’s life – Narcan. It’s Texas law for all schools to have it on campus, but what does that space look like?

We queried a handful of local districts.

Does your district have Narcan?

  • Pearland Independent School District: Yes
  • Fort Bend Independent School District: Yes
  • Katy Independent School District: Yes, the police department began issuing Narcan in October 2021.
  • University of Houston: Yes, all campus police officers are equipped with and trained to use Narcan in the event of an opioid overdose on campus.

At all schools?

  • Pearland ISD: Our School Resource Officers (SROs) carry Narcan and maintain presence at our Junior High and High School campuses. Pearland ISD is in the process of implementing Narcan in all campus clinics with grades fifth through 12th to meet the requirements of SB 629.
  • Fort Bend ISD: Currently a Narcan box is at every middle school and high school campus. We have received another shipment, which will allow us to place a Narcan box at all elementary campus clinics also.
  • Katy ISD: All police officers carry two doses of Narcan.

How many sprays does the district have?

  • Pearland ISD: Narcan is carried by each of our 11 full-time SROs. Pearland ISD has acquired 96 nasal sprays of Narcan.
  • UofH: 172 doses have been issued to personnel with 48 doses in reserve.

Who is trained to administer?

  • Pearland ISDS: Our SROs and campus nurses are trained to administer Narcan.
  • Fort Bend ISD: All campus RNs and high school licensed vocational nurses (LVNs) are trained on the storage, use, administration and disposal of Narcan.
  • Katy ISD: Currently only certified police officers are trained and allowed to administer.
  • UofH: All UHPD Police and security officers are trained in the use of Narcan.

How many employees are trained to administer?

  • Pearland ISD: Currently, 25 registered nurses and 11 SROs are trained.
  • Fort Bend ISD: 12 LVNs and 83 RNs
  • UofH: 128 UHPD employees (police and security officers)

Does the district keep track of how many times the drug has been administered?

  • Pearland ISD: Yes, the district keeps track of how many times Narcan has to be administered.
  • Fort Bend ISD: The district has never administered Narcan. If it is used, it will be reported to district.
  • Katy ISD: Yes, the administration of Narcan must be documented in the officer’s report. Currently we have not had an incident where Narcan was deployed.
  • UofH: To date, UHPD employees have not been in a situation where the administration of Narcan has been necessary.

Houston Independent School District responded to the above questions with the following statement:

“Last school year, our officers received Naloxone, and we replenish it based on vendor expiration dates. The HISD Police Department provided Naloxone exclusively to our officers (patrol and campus) for emergency use. Training is provided to ensure effective Naloxone administration.

It’s another tool to keep your child safe at school. Narcan, an over the counter nasal spray used to reverse an opioid overdose.

“It’s at all of our secondary schools,” said Maria Johnson, a registered nurse and coordinator of Health Services at Fort Bend ISD. “So, all of our middle school and high school campuses. And we’re in the process of putting it in our elementary schools as well. Because it could be anyone that’s affected. Curiosity. You know, siblings in the house may have something that, you know, a younger one may pick up or touch. You’re seeing fentanyl that’s being laced into vape pens, into pills. You have students that think they’re buying maybe something for focusing in school, but it ends up that it actually is laced with fentanyl.”

Johnson said Narcan is on a total of 30 campuses throughout Fort Bend ISD.

“All of our registered nurses and our licensed vocational nurses, we have 83 registered nurses in the district,” Johnson said. “For our Gen Ed, we have 17 special ed nurses that are also trained. And then we have 13 LVNs in the district that are trained. That’s amazing. And we also have the police officers that went through training, also the ISD officers. Our school resource officers are also trained. We have not had to use it, thankfully, but we’re glad that we have it there because like I said, ‘You never know, you never know.’”

A district, 70 miles north of Fort Bend ISD, says it is also thankful for Narcan.

Lacy Green, Cleveland ISD Coordinator of Health and Nursing Services, said Narcan has been administered four successful times.

“I think it was about a week or two in that we had our first dose and then it’s been about a month since our last dose,” Green said. “All schools, every school, every campus has it in their clinic. The high school has an extra set of doses in their clinic. Every officer carries Narcan on their belts and the Transportation Department carries it. We’re training anybody who is with students. I would say about 100 right now with the district.”

Green said since the start of the school year, there have been 15 incidents in which students needed medical attention. Eight of those incidents were serious and four of them required Narcan.

“Two of them needed one dose and two of them needed two doses,” Green said. “The more people that are trained, the more people that will have access to be able to get that first dose sooner.”

Students within Cleveland ISD have expressed interest in learning how to administer Narcan, according to Green.

Cleveland Independent School District has rolled out two solutions to help manage this problem. One, drug counseling with the student and their parent or guardian. Another new program is called “COPS.” Parents of students within the district are invited to help monitor hallways and lunch periods. These parents need to pass a background check and possess a valid ID, but it’s an opportunity for parents to experience the school day firsthand, according to the district.

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About the Author:

Zachery “Zach” Lashway anchors KPRC 2+ Now. He began at KPRC 2 as a reporter in October 2021.