School Smoking Policy Changed

School authorities plan to close a gap in the schools’ smoking ordinance by prohibiting tobacco products all the time — not just when school is in session. The Board of Education had its first reading of an advanced law at a recent school board conference. School Supt. Elizabeth Feser declared that the last policy, was updated in 1999, and needed tweaking. The current regulation states, “Smoking and the use of tobacco product is banned on school grounds while school is in session.”

The new law states that smoking is banned in school buildings, on school property, on school buses, vans, or any school-provided transportation, or at any school-sponsored activity.

“Smoking habit is also banned at any time in any offices assigned to, or any places used by Board of Education personnel, and at public conference held under the auspices of the Board of Education,” the policy reported.

The law applies to the lighting or carrying of a cig, cigar, pipe or similar device, or even the use of smokeless or chewing tobacco products.

Board member Dora Kubek suggested that the new law specify the prohibiting also of electronic cigarettes.

An e-cigarette is an electrical device that increases the act of tobacco smoking by producing an inhaled vapor bearing the physical sensation, appearance, and often the flavor of inhaled tobacco smoke, without its odor or health risks, according to an online resource.