Drug Education Policy

Tower Hill Primary School

Drug Education Policy

Date                  :  Autumn 2015                 Author : Emma Ramsier                        

Review Date          : Autumn 2018          

Introduction

At Tower Hill we believe that Drug Education is an integral part of Personal Development Learning (PDL).

The misuse of drugs both legal and illegal by young people can have a serious impact on their educational attainment, relationships with family and friends and their health and well-being, preventing them from reaching their full potential.

Tower Hill School is committed to the health and safety of our children and staff and will take action to safeguard their well-being. They will actively discourage the use of illegal substances and the misuse of glue, solvents, prescribed and over-the-counter medicines. 

Drugs education is delivered at Tower Hill as part of PDL and fulfils the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum for Science.

Our Main Aims are to:

  • Reinforce and safeguard the health and safety of pupils, staff and others who use the school;
  • Develop a whole school approach to drug education in the context of the school curriculum that complements the values and ethos of the school;
  • Enable all members of the school community to manage drugs on school premises and to ensure that any incidents that occur are dealt with confidently, consistently and in the best interests of those involved;
  • Equip our pupils with the knowledge, understanding and skill to lead a healthy, independent and safe lifestyle.

Definitions

For the purpose of this policy a ‘drug’ is a substance people take to change the way they feel, think or behave.

The term ‘drugs’ includes:

  • All legal drugs including alcohol, tobacco, e-cigarettes, and legal highs
  • All over the counter and prescribed medications
  • Illegal and controlled substances including volatile substances (solvents), as classified in The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971,

Drugs Education Programme

The aim of the drugs education programme is to:

  • enable children to become accurately informed of the effects - good or bad - of drugs on health and make informed healthy choices
  • make children aware of the legal aspects of drug-taking
  • develop in children the ability to identify risks and help others to do so
  • enhance children’s decision-making skills and self-esteem
  • enable children to communicate and discuss drug-related issues
  • enable children to assert themselves and resist peer pressure
  • explore attitudes.

In EYFS children will explore ways to keep healthy and active. In KS1 and Years 3 & 4, children will learn about general issues with regard to medicines and keeping healthy. In Years 5 & 6, children will be taught about the use and misuse of drugs. Throughout the school children will take part in activities which aim to develop their self-confidence and assertiveness.

Management of drug-related incidents

Pupils, staff and visitors to the premises are made aware of the school’s drug policy.

Where a child is found in possession of cigarettes, e-cigarettes, alcohol, legal highs, glue, solvents or any other inappropriate substance, parents will be informed and appropriate steps taken.

Hearsay or suspicion that a pupil might be engaged in substance misuse or other

concerns should be reported to the Headteacher and, if deemed serious, should be entered into a log.

If there is a reasonable suspicion that a child has brought inappropriate substances into school, staff will not search a child’s property or person, but will try to persuade the child to produce voluntarily the substance by asking him/her to turn out his/her pockets or bag.

In an emergency arising from an incident involving substance abuse, the well-being of the child is paramount and all steps will be taken to ensure the child’s safety.

The misuse of drugs is a serious matter and, in the event of any serious incident, the school will consult the police and parents will be informed.

Roles and Responsibilities

The Headteacher: must be notified of any drug related incidents occurring on the school premises. The Headteacher will then act in accordance with the document Drugs:Guidance for Schools DfES 2004 .  Information relating to such incidents is to be kept in a file in the Headteacher’s office. It is the head’s role to co-ordinate the involvement of outside agencies, where necessary.

PDL Co-ordinator:  is responsible for leading the development of PDL across the school and co-ordinating long and medium term plans to ensure curriculum coverage. 

Governing Body: is responsible for monitoring the effectiveness of the Drug Education Policy. 

Teaching and Learning

A variety of teaching and learning methods will be employed to deliver drug education appropriately. Where appropriate, external agencies will be invited to talk to or work with pupils to enhance pupils’ knowledge and understanding.

Inclusion

In order to keep our children as safe as we possibly can and prepare them for the temptations and challenges which they are likely to encounter as they get older, we will endeavour to ensure that all children take part in Drugs Education irrespective of gender, disability, culture, religion or special needs.

Confidentiality

Class Teachers and Teaching Assistants conduct lessons in a sensitive manner and in confidence. Teachers are available to discuss issues with any parents. Children’s questions are answered as honestly and fully as appropriate. However, if a child makes reference to anything which gives cause for concern (e.g. illegal substance use) then clearly such matters cannot remain confidential. Staff will report such incidents to one of the six Designated Safeguarding Leaders (DSL) who will decide whether the matter should be dealt with as a child protection issue (see Child Protection Policy.)

Visitors & Volunteer Helpers

The school uses several outside agencies to contribute to the Drug Education programme. e.g. School Nurse, Safer Neighbourhood Team.  These visitors and regular voluntary helpers in school have been CRB checked. Preparation and planning of visits is carefully undertaken in order to maximize the benefits of the visit. Visitors and helpers are made aware of the School’s Drug Education Policy and expectations with regard to confidentiality. There is a Safe Guarding pack that is given to regular voluntary helpers. Visitors do not take sole responsibility for classes and class teachers or teaching assistants are always present.

Parents/Carers and the Wider Community

The school will endeavour to keep parents informed about the drug education provided for their children through Curriculum Maps. Teachers will be available for further information about the general themes and issues covered including: information about the drugs discussed.

The Pastoral Care Manager will signpost parents to detailed information and leaflets about drugs for parents to consult or borrow as well as access to other information; and signposting to other relevant agencies e.g. Safer Neighbourhood Team.

Tower Hill School upholds the Government’s non-smoking policy and smoking on the premises is strictly prohibited, for both cigarettes and e-cigarettes.

Staff development and training opportunities

Many of the issues raised in drug education activities are sensitive. It is important that all staff are aware of the different dynamics in the class when adult/parent helpers are present during activities and discussions.

To develop staff confidence and competence:

  • the subject leader will attend appropriate conferences;
  • training needs are identified through induction programmes and performance management;
  • the subject leader will arrange for relevant advice and information from courses to be disseminated and, where appropriate, to be included in improvement planning and turned into practice;
  • where necessary, the subject leader leads (or arranges) school‐based training.
  • As part of their induction new staff will be made familiar with the Drugs Education Policy.

Linked Policies

Drug Education is a part of the Personal Development Learning (PDL) umbrella and so this policy should be read alongside:

  • PDL Policy
  • Sex and Relationship Education Policy
  • Behaviour Policy
  • CPSHE Policy

This policy also operates in conjunction with the following policies:

  • Teaching for Learning Policy
  • Assessment Policy
  • Accessibility Plan
  • Special Educational Needs & Disabilities Policy
  • Child Protection Policy
  • Confidentiality Policy
  • Curriculum Policy
  • Health and Safety Policy

Review and Evaluation of Policy

The evaluation process will serve the basis for planning programmes of action and targeting time, support and resources.

This policy will be reviewed by the PDL Manager in conjunction with all stakeholders on a three year basis.