High school smoking rates drop to new ten-year low
Government officials say smoking among high-schoolers has hit its lowest rate in more than a decade. The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also says the rate of high-school students who try smoking is down as well. In a report released today, the CDC says 22 percent of high-schoolers were smokers in 2003. That's down from 36 percent in 1997. The CDC also puts the rate of high-schoolers who tried smoking in 2003 at 58 percent. Just four years earlier, that rate was over 70 percent. The CDC credits recent increases in cigarette prices for the decline, as well as school-based and media anti-smoking campaigns. But they fear the decline might be slowing down -- and want fewer depictions of smoking in the media and more smoke-free homes.