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Schools & Child Care

Commercial Tobacco and Vaping Resources for Elementary Eductors

Commercial tobacco use continues to be the number one cause of preventable death and disease in Ontario, The good news is that smoking rates have been dropping over the past decades. Among youth in Grades 7-12 the rate has dropped below 10%. However, there is a real concern about the numbers of young people and children who are experimenting with vaping. They risk becoming the newest generation to be addicted to the nicotine found in many e-juices. Vaping devices are often small and can resemble a pen or memory stick which makes it easy to overlook them in your classroom and elsewhere.

(The term commercial tobacco is used to differentiate tobacco industry products from, and to acknowledge the use of, traditional tobacco that forms part of Indigenous culture and spirituality.)

Educators play a significant role in reducing initiation of smoking and vaping and promoting healthy smoke-free choices. Information about all commercial tobacco and vape-free living topics including cessation supports and legislation are available here.

  • Know What’s In Your Mouth – A toolkit with lesson plans and activities to raise awareness about chew tobacco use. Posters also available. Grades 7 & 8.
  • 100% Smoke and Vape-Free School Grounds requirement: the Smoke-Free Ontario Act requires that all school property plus a 20-metre radius around all schools grounds (equivalent to two school bus lengths) be No Smoking, No Vaping by anyone, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year round. The health unit provides signage and offers information and resources that can be used to communicate with the school community. Tobacco enforcement officers inspect schools to check for compliance with the law.
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