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CCSD to Install Vape Detectors in High School Bathrooms

CCSD Staff 2 - 10/31/2019 10:34:00 AM

Vaping Graphic

Vaping is an epidemic affecting young people everywhere. Adolescents are enticed by the flashy packaging, fruity flavors and engaging marketing campaigns. To help protect the health and safety of our students, our district has taken significant measures to prevent students from vaping on school grounds.

The district has invested in state-of-the-art vape detectors that will be installed in every high school bathroom by the end of December to detect when students are vaping and ultimately discourage it. Our staff is already on high alert when it comes to vaping, but we believe this will be an additional deterrent for students who might be vaping in between classes.

The district is also developing partnerships with local health authorities to implement preventative measures and educational programs on vaping for students and families. The district currently partners with local agencies providing Alcohol and Other Drugs (AoD) counseling services for students, as well as education within classrooms and extracurricular groups to ensure students are aware of the dangers of vaping and other drug use.

While district leaders are committed to doing everything possible to help mitigate vaping in our schools, it’s just as important for parents to be aware of the dangers of vaping and to take preventative measures at home.

“We encourage parents, guardians and community members to work together to educate students and other young people on the dangers of vaping,” said Sarah Hawthorne, high school guidance counselor at CCSD. “We urge them to talk openly with their students about concerns and about the studies that have been released on the detriment of vaping. Having open conversations about what is going on in students’ lives allows for parents and guardians to support them in healthy ways.”

Along with the addictive and damaging effects of nicotine, vapes use chemicals for flavoring that poison the human body, resulting in lung disease, cancer and in serious cases, even death. Since vaping is a new phenomenon, there isn’t a lot of research on its long-term effects on the body and brain.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nicotine can harm the developing adolescent brain in the short-term, but scientists are still learning about the long-term health effects of vaping in general. Some ingredients in e-cigarette aerosol could be harmful to the lungs in the long-term, but there isn’t enough research to know how those harmful effects will manifest. According to the CDS, aerosol can contain nicotine, ultrafine particles, volatile organic compounds, cancer-causing chemicals, and heavy metals such as nickel, tin and lead.

E-cigarettes are advertised using themes and tactics that have been shown to increase youth initiation of other tobacco products, including cigarettes. Research from the CDC showed that about 8 in 10 middle school and high school students – more than 20 million adolescents – said they had seen e-cigarette advertising.

We encourage families to talk to their student today about the dangers of vaping. For more information and resources on how to start that conversation, contact Sarah Hawthorne at sarah.hawthorne@ccsd.us.