Renmark West Primary School

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Drug Usage and Education

Rationale

 We believe Australian culture reflects, like many other Western cultures an increasingly drug orientated lifestyle. We cannot ignore the fact that our students will be exposed to drugs of various kinds during their schooling and beyond. It is our responsibility to educate our students in this regard and to provide a safe environment for them whilst they are under our care.

Medication Management  

We will support parents and students in the safe management of prescribed medication. To do so the school needs to be informed when a student is taking medication during school hours.  

Where long term medical or allergic conditions, requiring medication exist, the family doctor should provide directions in writing  through the parents, per the appropriate form as to the nature of the drug and its appropriate use. Photos and medical information  of students with long term medical or allergic conditions will be displayed in a prominent position and all staff will be made aware  of these.  

Analgesics will only be given with written permission of the parent. Instances of this will be recorded for future reference.  Children who are identified as asthmatics should provide the school with an Asthma Management Plan provided by their family doctor.   

Inappropriate Use of Drugs  

The school policy does not allow students to do any of the following while on the school grounds or participating in any school activity:

The school also prohibits the possession, sale, supply, exchange or negotiation in relation to any of the above when on the school premises or on any other occasion when the staff of the school have responsibility for an individual or group of students.

If any of the rules above are breached, the following actions will be taken:

  1. Parent Notification: Parents are notified as soon as possible to allow them to help with interviews, again confidentiality is important to help families.
  2. Incident Investigation: This is carried out at school by the Principal.
    Parents are involved at this stage.
  3. District Superintendent of Education Notification (illegal substance)
    The District Superintendent of Education must be notified should an incident at school occur.
  4. Police Notification: (illegal substance)
    By law and Education Department guidelines we are required to inform the local police.
  5. Police Interviews:  Should the police need to interview children parents will be notified and can be present, arrangements can be made to  conduct these at home or at school.
  6. Suspension: Depending on the seriousness of the situation and the type of substance abuse, and the particular circumstances, the school maybe required to suspend the child. This can also allow time for families to discuss the situation, set up interviews and seek professional help and counselling.
  7. Counselling: This should not be necessarily last on the list as it is probably the most important part of the whole process.
    Time should  be set aside for families and the child to receive professional counselling through Substance Abuse Counsellor at the  Community Health Centre in Berri.
    The school will also support in this area.
  8. Searches:  Education Regulations provide that the Principal or authorised delegate may search the bags, lockers and other possessions of students only when there is reasonable cause for suspicion.  
    Searches of the person or of property when possession of drugs is suspected are conducted by police officers.

School Camps and Excursion - After Hours Activities

The School Drug Policy applies when students and staff are involved in official school camps and excursions or after hours activities (eg sleepover)

Prevention

The school has a preventive health program which aims to promote positive health and lifestyle behaviours. This is part of the Health and PE courses.

The Drug Strategy program will be exposed to all students in all year levels each year.

The program consists of factual information, attitude/values clarification and skills development, appropriate to the age of the students, concerning the use of drugs including:

Resources which can be utilised include:

The preventive health program will be modified from time to time in accordance with social changes, school community wishes and parent  input.  

Resource Personnel