Chillicothe High School Holds Anti-Drug Rally on Courthouse Steps


Chillicothe High School's student body marched to the Ross Court House on Thursday morning for the annual Keys to Success assembly. Keys to Success is the Chillicothe City School District's anti-drug and anti-alcohol program in which students commit to staying drug and alcohol free, as well as agree to being drug tested. It was founded by distinguished alumnus Gary VonKennel in 2015.

"No student gets removed from the program for a strike," said Debbie Bettendorf, the program's marketing coordinator. "The program gets them the guidance and help they need within our resources."

At the event, students heard testimonies from individuals who had been impacted by drugs and alcohol.

The rally concluded with the grand-prize drawing, a Kia Rio donated by Herrnstein Auto Group; Chillicothe junior Maddie Johnson took home the coveted prize.

Eight scholarships (from Emily Gerber Poe, Dave Strickland State Farm, Chillicothe Education Foundation, John Lods, and Diedra Rowland of Kindly Boutique) and 235 prizes were also awarded to students who passed drug tests, attended and passed their classes, and were good citizens. Ohio Health donated 500 student t-shirts, while Cohen Orthopedics supplied the drug testing kits and Dwell Real Estate offered refreshments.

Pictured Left to Right: Chillicothe High School Principal Matt Ballentine, CHS junior Maddie Johnson, Chillicothe City Schools Superintendent Debbie Swinehart, and Herrnstein Auto Group's Abby Vaughan.

The annual "Keys to Success" assembly for Chillicothe High School students to prevent drug abuse

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