This policy is current as at 11/12/2018 03:15am, AEDT. Please refer to policy library website (https://education.nsw.gov.au/policy-library) for an updated version.

Drugs in Schools Policy

This policy sets out requirements for schools to plan and implement appropriate responses to drug related incidents, with an emphasis on prevention through drug education and safe and supportive school environments, and intervention and support for students who may be involved.

1. Objectives - Policy statement

1.1

This policy covers the possession and use of alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs and the misuse of over-the-counter and prescribed medications, including the supply of restricted substances, on school premises by students. It also covers the possession and use of alcohol and tobacco on school premises by employees and visitors.

1.2

Department of Education and Training (DET) employees are also bound by requirements in the Code of Conduct relating to drugs, alcohol and tobacco.

1.3 Illegal drugs

1.3.1

Schools must be places which are free of illegal drugs.

1.3.2

Principals must manage disciplinary matters involving suspected illegal substances or supply of restricted substances consistent with the Suspension and Expulsion of School Students - Procedures (PD/2006/0316). (PDF 1495.67KB)

1.3.3

Principals must report incidents involving illegal drugs to the School Safety and Response Hotline on 1300 363 778.

1.4 Alcohol

1.4.1

Alcohol must not be consumed or brought to school premises during school hours. This includes employees, students and visitors and other people who use school premises. In the case of cross-sectoral sites (e.g. joint school/TAFE sites), a decision regarding the extent of ‘school premises’ will need to be made in the local context.

1.4.2

The consumption of alcohol is not permitted at any school function (including those conducted outside school premises) at any time when school students, from any school, are present. A school function is any function organised by the school and/or in the name of the school and applies to all types of functions including dances, farewells, sporting fixtures and barbecues.

1.4.3

Community groups may be permitted to consume alcohol on school premises outside school hours consistent with the requirements in Community Use of School Facilities, Policy and Implementation Procedures (PD/2009/0400).

1.4.4

Principals must manage incidents involving alcohol consistent with the school's student welfare and discipline policies and Suspension and Expulsion of School Students – Procedures (PD/2002/0014) (PDF 1495.67KB).

1.5 Tobacco

1.5.1

Smoking on school premises, including school buildings, gardens, sports fields and car parks, is prohibited. This includes students, employees, visitors and other people who use school premises, including community groups. In the case of cross-sectoral sites (e.g. joint school/TAFE sites), a decision regarding the extent of ‘school premises’ will need to be made in the local context.

1.5.2

Principals must manage incidents involving tobacco consistent with the school's student welfare and discipline policies and Suspension and Expulsion of School Students - Procedures (PD/2006/0316). (PDF 1495.67KB)

1.6 Misuse of over-the-counter and prescribed medications, including the supply of restricted substances

1.6.1

In cases where a student is supplying a restricted substance, principals must manage the situation consistent with

1.6.2

In all other cases of misuse of prescribed medications or over-the-counter medications, principals must manage the matter as a student welfare and health issue.

1.7. Misuse of inhalants/solvents

1.7.1

Where there are concerns that a student may be misusing inhalants/solvents at school, principals must manage the matter as a student welfare and health issue.

1.7.2

School use of products containing solvents must be strictly supervised by school staff and limited wherever possible.

1.8. Drug testing students, including breath testing

1.8.1

Students must not be drug tested at school or during school activities such as excursions and sporting events. This includes breath testing.

2. Audience and applicability

2.1

NSW public schools

2.2

This policy does not apply to lawful and responsible use of prescribed or other medication.

3. Context

3.1

Departmental policy on the possession, use and supply of alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs and restricted substances is governed by the following legislation: Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985, Public Health Act 1991 , Liquor Act 1982 , Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 1966 , Smoke-Free Environment Act 2000.

3.2

This policy is to be implemented consistent with Occupational Health and Safety Policy (Intranet access only) obligations for ensuring a safe and healthy working and learning environment for staff, students and visitors.

3.3

The Student Welfare Policy (PD/2002/0052), Student Discipline in Government Schools Policy (PD/2006/0316) and Suspension and Expulsion of School Students – Procedures (PD/2006/0316) (PDF 1495.67KB) provide a framework for managing drug related incidents in schools.

4. Responsibilities and delegations

4.1 Principals

4.1.1

Principals are responsible for implementing policy and procedures for managing drug related incidents in schools.

4.1.2

Principals are responsible for ensuring the school rules and consequences about possession and use of tobacco, alcohol and illegal drugs at school by students are made known to students, staff and parents.

4.1.3

Principals are responsible for ensuring departmental policy about tobacco and alcohol use on school premises by visitors and community groups is made known to the school community.

4.1.4

Principals must monitor and review the implementation and effectiveness of responses to drug related incidents.

4.1.5

Principals must ensure that all drug-related incidents are managed in conjunction and consistent with Drugs in Schools Procedures for Managing Drug-Related Incidents.

4.2 Teachers

4.2.1

Teachers are expected to support the implementation of the Drugs in Schools Policy.

4.2.2

Teachers are expected to inform the principal when they have reasonable grounds to suspect that a student is involved in drug related behaviours.

5. Monitoring, evaluation and reporting requirements

5.1

In cases where a student has been suspended for an incident involving illegal drugs or supplying a restricted substance, the principal must report this in the suspension data to be returned each semester.

6. Contact

Manager, Drug Prevention Programs: (02) 9244 5561.

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