On Wednesday, October 17, 2018 marijuana legalization took place for adults over the age of 19. As a school district, we wanted to let you know what measures we are putting in place to build student and staff understanding.
In school districts, rules around cannabis will not change. Like alcohol, cannabis is a controlled substance and is illegal for anyone under 19. Cannabis will not be allowed in our schools or on school properties. It is prohibited to be intoxicated, impaired, consume alcohol or smoke any substance including vaping, tobacco or cannabis on school property.
Bottom line: all of our policies prohibiting intoxication or controlled substances in schools still apply, regardless of the legal change.
Serious penalties will be given to those who sell or provide cannabis to youth, as laid out in the government’s Cannabis Act. One of the Canadian government’s articulated top priorities is to protect the health and safety of youth.
As a school district, we will continue to provide resources and information to students about substance use. Our goal is to engage in supportive conversations with students, as well as provide resources and expertise as related to prevention, early intervention, and harm-reduction.
Helpful Information & Frequently Asked Questions
What does the legalization of cannabis mean for SD62 schools?
Marijuana is still illegal for anyone under the age of 19, and just like other controlled substances like alcohol, we don’t allow cannabis in our schools.
Intoxication, smoking of any substance, vaping or drinking alcohol are all prohibited on school property. For more information regarding the legalization of cannabis see:
SD62 has dedicated staff who talk to students about prevention, health, addiction and the impacts of substance use. Our staff will continue to provide this education. Staff has been briefed and we are continuing to work with schools to provide them with information and resources they may need surrounding drug education, including the legalization of cannabis.
What might be helpful for me as a parent/guardian?
Parents often wonder about the best way to protect their children when it comes to issues like alcohol and other drugs. Here are ten important tips parents can use to help their children (and others) navigate life successfully, including avoiding harm from alcohol and other drugs.
Stay connected – more than anything, your child needs you! Young people who know they’re loved have a stronger sense of self-worth.
Have fun, and focus on building a positive relationship.
Show your child you believe in them by supporting their interests and encouraging them to pursue their passions.
Help your child solve their own issues – it helps build their resilience.
Resist the urge to know everything – they’re growing up and need some ‘space’ to find their own meaning of things.
Share clear, consistent expectations – the more you discuss these openly with your child, the more likely they will understand your intensions, and the more likely they will adopt them.
Recognize that we all make mistakes, and use them as opportunities to learn together.
Expect to be challenged – be respectful and prepared to negotiate but clearly communicate your position and your own values.
Be available – by encouraging open and regular communication, you’re showing your child their thoughts and concerns matter.
Be a positive role model – part of being a parent is modelling healthy behaviours and attitudes.
I would like to know more. Who can I talk to?
The best place to start is with your child’s Principal or school counsellor. They will be happy to chat with you and offer support if needed.
Cannabis Use And Youth: A Parent’s Guide – This guide provides an honest and thoughtful discussion on cannabis so parents can make better decisions about cannabis use—or non-use—in the context of your family and be better equipped to have productive conversations with their children.
Alcohol Sense- This resource, part of Healthy Families BC, provides parents and adult influencers with tips, tools and videos for starting conversations that will help guide kids towards healthy decisions when it comes to alcohol or other drugs.
Foundry BC- Foundry Offers young people from 12-25 years of age with health and wellness resources, services and supports online and through integrated services, including those through the Victoria Foundry office (www.victoriayouthclinic.ca)