School officials say instances involving students bringing e-cigs to school have been minimal, so far, but they are trying to be proactive before the problem gets worse.
“We’re a tobacco free area, and we don’t want anything that looks like it,” says Jane Wilhelmus with the Warrick County School Corporation. The Warrick County School Corporation works to eliminate electronic cigarettes or ‘e-cigs’ on school grounds. “We are really trying to discourage any type of tobacco use, and hopefully, preventing students from starting that habit.”
School officials say until now, having an e-cig at school was not really against the rules in the same way as having a cigarette. As the times change, with new devices like these, the corporation realized it was time to adjust their tobacco and drug policy. “As they were going through, they noticed that we had a few things that were a little outdated.”
The school board votes 7 to 0 to ban the device. “E- cigarettes have been a very new fad so to speak,” says Dr. Walter Lambert with the school corporation. As the popularity of electronic cigarettes continues to soar, so do the questions and concerns. “There’s not a lot of research out there, as to what it really does to your system, if it is healthy or not healthy for you.”
Keeping students healthy and safe, school officials say, it’s all part of keeping up with constant change. “Even our technology policy had the word ‘beeper’ in it, so we took that out to reflect the items and the changes with that as well.”
The discipline guidelines are now the same for students who bring in cigarettes, chewing tobacco, or e-cigs on school property. The policy change is now in effect.