Does your district have issues with students using/possessing e-cigarettes or other vaping products on campus? If so, you might find it interesting to know that several schools across the country have filed or are preparing to file lawsuits against JUUL, the industry giant manufacturer of e-cigarettes. So far, schools in Missouri, Kansas, New York and Arizona are among those making claims.
The lawsuits allege that JUUL’s products are a danger to students’ health and that dealing with student e-cigarette use, confiscation, investigation, discipline and referral for remediation has become a major problem for schools, escalating to the point where the issue has drained them of time, attention and resources that could be spent elsewhere on education. Monies sought in the actions would theoretically be used to help to defer those costs and assist with proactive measures to curb future use.
I’ve had a number of calls from schools in the past couple of years about various aspects of student use and possession of these products. Anecdotally, it would appear that this is something prevalent in Oklahoma, not only in our urban areas but in the small towns as well. Private schools are not immune either, offering prevention seminars for concerned parents.
From a legal perspective, it remains to be seen if these school districts filing suit have a chance to make a good case for recovery. Apparently there are those who believe they can. This is a topic that will be worth following in the coming months.
This is what I hope all Oklahoma educators are feeling as they move into summer breaks: A STATE OF URGENCY! I am quite confident that Oklahoma professional educators cringe every time a new statistic or decision regarding education makes headlines, such as the 5th & 8th grade spring writing tests being invalidated.
In my mind, this time of the year always brings some reflection. As you wind down and then start a fresh calendar year, there are always items you find you will never repeat as well as those you want to introduce.