Students who make up special education populations are a high-risk group for the development of future substance abuse. A number of factors contribute to this phenomenon. Students with emotional disturbances and learning disabilities face unique risk factors and skills deficits. Such students are at a considerable disadvantage for successfully negotiating peer pressure and high-stress situations. However, very few prevention programs target specifically this population. An overview of the risk factors and skills deficits unique to special education students is used to evaluate existing approaches to prevention and to make recommendations for future efforts.
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