Policy created to combat use of e-cigarettes in school

JUULs, vape pens and other e-cigarette technology have created new problems for administration.

Aaron Cohn, Reporter

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Due to recent increases in e-cigarette technology, the administration has been forced to create policies on student vaping and use in schools.

The old policy, located in the 2017-18 student handbook states that, “the possession or use of tobacco, nicotine, alcohol or unlawful drugs” is a violation of the student code of conduct and, “a student who violates the Student Code of Conduct shall be subject to disciplinary action.”

Additionally the handbook states that, “when a student commits . . . alcohol and/or tobacco related offenses . . . he/she may be referred to law enforcement officials.”

According to a 2016 report by the US Surgeon General, “E-cigarette use has increased considerably in recent years, growing an astounding 900% among high school students from 2011 to 2015.”

The popularization of e-cigarettes has made it necessary for administration to adapt.

“As things change the policy gets updated,” said Vice Principal Brad McKedy.

An e-cigarette is a battery powered device that converts liquid nicotine in to a vapor that the user inhales. Common forms of e-cigarettes are vape pens and JUULs, which are rechargeable devices that electronically deliver nicotine to the user by slowly heating a wick and coil system.

The true levels of student use are fairly obscure.

“I’ve seen it once or twice in classrooms, but also in the bathrooms,” said SHS Sophomore Corbin Edison.

Administrator Robert Medley said he only sees one to two cases a month.

A few teachers admit their knowledge of JUULing to be very limited, which creates new problems for administration as they cannot monitor the entire school. The new policies inform teachers about JUULing and how to combat it.

The updated policy states that, “Student possession, use, distribution or sale of tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems, including smoking or use of an inhalant delivery device, on district premises. . . is prohibited.” and defines inhalant delivery systems as “a device that can be used to deliver nicotine or cannabinoids in the form of a vapor or aerosol to a person inhaling from the device or a component of the device . . .”

Policy updates alone are not enough to completely stop student use of e-cigarettes.

“We have all the policies and security is good, [but] we can’t stop them all,” said Duane Feakin, who handles campus security.


UPDATE: April 11th at 1:52 pm

The original image accompanying this story was removed on April 11th at 1:52 pm. While the image was obtained with permission, the owner has requested that it be removed and we as a staff choose to honor that request.  


2 Responses to “Policy created to combat use of e-cigarettes in school”

  1. Rylan warner on April 10th, 2018 12:15 pm

    I did not give anyone permission to use my photo

  2. Georgia Jory on April 10th, 2018 1:56 pm

    News Editor Comment-
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Policy created to combat use of e-cigarettes in school