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The Rising Drug & Alcohol Problem in Schools


Every week one primary school child is suspended for consuming drink and/or drugs and 40 children aged between 5-11yrs were excluded from school in England last year due to the problem, latest figures reveal.

The situation in secondary schools is worse still as 6,500 pupils were excluded between 2012-2013 due to drink and drugs. These new figures are warning signs that teachers and parents are losing the battle against substance abuse.

The drink and drug related offences included alcohol abuse, drug dealing, inappropriate use of prescribed drugs, and possession of illegal drugs, smoking and substance abuse, said The Department of Education.

There are 39weeks in the average school term, which converts to one exclusion order imposed on an under 11yr old for drink or drug related offences in school every week.

'The striking thing is that 40 primary school children have been excluded because they turned up drunk or high.

'It is deeply worrying that so many children appear at school under the influence.

'We do have to ask what is happening to the parents of these children and are they being prosecuted. Clearly they are getting the drugs and alcohol from somewhere.' Tory MP Andrew Griffiths told MailOnline.

Increased security measures in schools including bag searches; teachers now have the means to find drugs or alcohol and other permitted items which they may not have found in the past when bag searches were not common place.

'Prohibited items including alcohol and drugs have no place whatsoever in the classroom. We have introduced a range of powers for teachers to ensure discipline, behaviour and safety are maintained', said a spokesperson for The Department for Education

'Our guidance on behaviour, clarifies what headteachers can do to properly discipline disruptive pupils and frees up teachers' time and energy, allowing them to focus on what they do best – teaching and inspiring our next generation.

'Teachers now have stronger powers to search pupils, when they suspect they may be in possession of a prohibited item. Changes to the system mean a school's decision to exclude a pupil can no longer be overruled. Teachers can use reasonable force to remove disruptive pupils from the classroom when necessary.'

Source: Matt Chorley, Political Editor - The Daily Mail 

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