24th March 2023
Subject: E-Cigarettes and ‘vaping’ in school
We want to alert you about a worrying trend we are seeing among some pupils in school.
This letter is to:
- inform you of the issue
- give you access to information and resources
- alert you to the repercussions if your child is vaping on school property.
We take this issue very seriously due to the negative health effects vaping can have on our pupils.
What is vaping?
Vaping is the act of inhaling a vapor produced by an electronic vaporizer or e-cigarette. The vapor can contain nicotine and other substances. The liquids that are vaporized come different flavours and might even smell fruity. For example, “vape juices”, are sweet and even have names such as, mint, marshmallow, bubble-gum, lemonade and cookies. There are also some juices that contain cannabis oils.
The aerosol from e-cigarettes can be damaging to your health. It can contain harmful and potentially harmful chemicals, including nicotine; ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs; flavouring such as diacetyl, a chemical linked to a serious lung disease; volatile organic compounds such as benzene, which is found in car exhaust; and heavy metals such as nickel, tin and lead. E-cigarettes come in all different shapes. Some common styles look like a thick pen, a stylus for an iPad, a flash drive, or a small flask with a round chimney coming off the top. The devices are very small and can easily be hidden on a person or in their bag.
Our first and foremost concern is pupil health and safety. Pupils who are using these devices are inhaling nicotine and other harmful chemicals thinking it is safe. As you know, nicotine is highly addictive and some of these unregulated products that pupils are purchasing at vape shops or online, contain higher levels of nicotine than cigarettes.
As our policy states, any use and/or possession of tobacco, smokeless tobacco, cigars or smoking paraphernalia including lighters and e-smoking devices is prohibited on all school properties. Any use of any tobacco product within the school buildings, school facilities, during school-sponsored activities or on school grounds or school buses by any individual, is prohibited at all times.
Any pupils seen vaping in school will have their e-cigarette confiscated and their parents / carers informed. If parents / carers do not collect the e-cigarette in person within 5 days, we will dispose of them safely. Under no circumstances will your child be returned an e-cigarette that has been confiscated as smoking is against the law for young people under the age of 18.
Please find some information related to the health risks of vaping below. We kindly ask that you take a moment and look through these resources and have a conversation with your child:
• 2443-Talk-With-Your-Teen-About-E-cigarettes---A-Tip-Sheet-For-Parents.pdf (ctclearinghouse.org)