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Schools & Child Care

Substance Use Resources for Secondary Educators

Problematic substance use refers to the harmful use of any substance, such as alcohol or cannabis, an illicit drug, an over-the-counter drug, or a prescribed drug. Youth identify that they use drugs and alcohol for the same reasons that adults do: to enhance their social experience, and to cope with stress and mental health issues.

Educating students on why they should delay the onset of substance use is imperative for the developing teen brain. The teen brain is being ‘rewired’ and as a result is more vulnerable to the negative effects of drugs and alcohol. Teenagers are more likely to act impulsively and on instinct when faced with stressful or emotional decisions sometimes resulting in inexplicable behaviour and poor decision-making. Teens may not fully appreciate the immediate consequences of their actions. Educators play a key role in healthy student development.

For stats and details on Ontario Student Drug Use – Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey (OSDUHS).

  • Ophea H&PE Curriculum Lesson Plans offers lesson plans, supplements and activities designed to reflect the requirements of the Ontario Health and Physical Education curriculum. Talk to your school Health and Physical Education Lead or Curriculum Consultant to find out if your School Board subscribes. (Ophea).
  • Truth and Consequences
  • Exchange Works Program – Provides clean needles and supplies to people who use drugs and encourages the return of used needles and equipment for safe disposal. Services are provided with an anonymous and non-judgmental approach.
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