SUBSTANCE USE POLICY OF ST. PETERS' NATIONAL SCHOOL, PHIBSBORO
This Policy applies to the students, teacher, parents and ancillary staff of St. Peters National School, Phibsboro, also people who use the school building during school hours (8.50a.m. to 2.30p.m.). It also applies to school activities outside school hours both inside and outside the school building.
Management of Substances
Substance refers to (a) Medicinal drugs
(b) Recreational drugs
Medicinal drugs i.e. prescribed drugs for child’s medical conditions such as asthma, epilepsy, A.D.H.D, A.D.D, O.D.D, diabetes, flu.
Parents must notify teacher in writing of the medical condition in question.
Long Term Illness:
A large photograph of the child in question, together with details of illness must be provided for substitute teachers of his/her class and all teachers involved in yard supervision.
Administration of Medicine: The medicine should be self administered, if at all possible, under the supervision of the principal, class teacher or Secretary. Parents must notify the school in writing, that the child has permission to self-administer the medicine. No teacher can be obliged to administer medicine to a pupil. A teacher should not administer medication without the specific authorisation of the B.O.M.
(1) Asthma: The inhalers etc. are the personal property of the student and the school cannot be responsible for storage of personal inhalers. The onus is on each parent to make sure that each child’s inhaler is kept in their schoolbag, is in date for use and the child knows how to use it.
Diabetes & other related conditions: Parent must ensure that there is always a supply of high carbohydrate foods in the classroom for the child.
Labelling: Child’s name must be clearly labelled on all medicines.
Injections: If a child is required to have an injection during school hours, the parent must come to the school and administer it. If the child has permission to self-administer, this must be put in writing for the teacher.
Eye-drops, antibiotics, Ritalin and related drugs: Parent must give written permission for principal/secretary/teacher to administer these and must write to B.O.M. to authorise this, giving details of dosage.
First Aid: All staff members will be encouraged to do First Aid courses. In emergency situations qualified medical assistance will be secured at the earliest opportunity.
Where children are suffering from life threatening conditions, parents should outline clearly in writing what cannot be done in a particular emergency situation, with particular reference to what may be a risk to the child.
(a) Controlled substances: tobacco, Red Bull, alcohol, Alco-pops, or its equivalent, adults.
(b) Illegal substances: Cannabis, Ecstasy, Cocaine, Heroin, Amphetamines, Poppers, alcohol and all Alco-pops (underage)
(c) Medical: Painkillers, tranquilizers, cough mixture.
(d) Household substances: Solvents, aerosols, tipp-ex, glue.
Suspected use or supply of (a) and (d) above:
(1) Parents to be notified immediately and detailed investigation of the circumstances to be held by the principal, class teacher and parents. A written account to be made.
(2) If there is suspicion of supply by other children or adults outside the school, local gardaí must be notified and they will undertake this investigation. The H.S.E. will be notified. Where guilt of the child is established the offender must present, with his/her parents to the Board of Management. Sanctions will be at the discretion of the Board.
In the event of a second offence, a written notice of suspension will be issued to the offender, his/her parents having being notified beforehand. The term of suspension will be at the discretion of the Board.
(3) A programme of pastoral care and education will be put in place for the offender in conjunction with the school chaplain, as soon as possible.
Suspected use or supply of (b) or (c) above
(4) Parents and local gardaí to be notified immediately.
(5) Gardaí to carry out investigation in conjunction with the principal, class teacher and parents and a written account to be made. H.S.E. will be notified.
(6) Where guilt is established the offender must present, with his/her parents to the Board of Management and a written notice of suspension will be issued. The term for which will be at the discretion of the Board of Management.
Education of Students
The school will undertake a comprehensive S.P.H.E. programme, as required by the Department of Education and Science, including a programme specifically dealing with substance use i.e. “Walk Tall”.
If a parent/guardian appears to be under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs when arriving to collect child/children from school during school hours, the principal will contact the H.S.E. duty officer. If he/she cannot be contacted, the principal will contact the local gardaí. The child will not be allowed to leave the premises until his/her safety has been assured.
If the above happens at the end of the school day, the parent will be advised that it might be appropriate if another relative is called to accompany the child and parent home. The parent has a legal right to take the pupil at this stage. The Health Board and or Gardaí will be notified.
IMPLEMENTATION OF POLICY
The document will be reviewed on an annual basis.