Bam: Let’s address the drug menace in our schools

A senator has submitted a resolution to look for ways to address prevalence of illegal drugs in public elementary and high schools in the country.

In Senate Resolution No. 168, Sen. Bam Aquino plans to conduct an inquiry on drug education and prevention programs in schools and alternative learning systems (ALS) that will help keep the youth away from the drug menace.

“All schools and alternative learning systems have a significant role to play in addressing illegal drug use and abuse among children through drug education and other prevention programs,” said Sen. Bam.

 The senator stressed the need for schools and learning institutions to apply evidence-based approaches in the development and implementation of drug education and prevention programs for Filipino children and youth.

Sen. Bam emphasized that peer counseling, after-school programs and the adoption of a drug education framework that fosters trust rather than scare tactics, have proven to be effective tools in thwarting the drug menace.

 Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 mandates that instruction on drug abuse prevention and control shall be integrated in the elementary, secondary and tertiary curricula of all public and private schools.

The law also mandates all elementary, secondary and tertiary school student councils and campus organizations to include in their activities programs for the preventions of and deterrence of drug use and referral of treatment of students for drug dependence.

In addition, Sen. Bam said the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) has identified preventive education programs as a key component of its drug demand reduction strategy to discourage users and impending abusers from experimenting with illicit substances or continuing to abuse them. 

“As part of its mandate, the DDB must implement educational programs catering to every sector of society, including the youth and their educators,” said Sen. Bam.

Sen. Bam has also filed a resolution looking into the implementation of reproductive health education in our schools to address the rising number of teen pregnancy in the country.

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