As part of the Children’s Plan, the government committed itself to:
“examine the effectiveness of current delivery arrangements for all drugs education – including alcohol – and act to strengthen them if necessary.”
The Forum supported the process by acting as the secretariat to the Advisory Group on Drug and Alcohol Education, and by conducting a survey of the field.ÿ
The Advisory Group drew in policy specialists from inside and outside of government, teachers and young people.
Their final report is available for download from the Drug Education Forum’s website as is the government’s response.
As a result of the report the government:
- will ensure that all parents have access to accurate information and guidance about the risks to young people of drugs and alcohol through, amongst other things, our FRANK campaign and the new campaign on youth drinking;
- will improve the quality of drug and alcohol education by issuing new guidance, which will also cover the early identification of those beginning to experience problems; and
- have asked Sir Alasdair MacDonald, Head Teacher of Morpeth Secondary School in Tower Hamlets, to conduct an independent review of how the decision to give PSHE statutory status can be translated into a practicable way forward, to help improve young people’s knowledge and skills, enabling them to enjoy safe, healthy, productive and responsible lives.
Eric Carlin, Chair of the Forum, said:
The problems that drugs and alcohol cause are too important for drug education to be an optional subject for parents or schools.
The Drug Education Forum has been championing the importance of supporting parents for many years. This can be done by ensuring that parents have the right information and that every child and young person receives high quality drug and alcohol education from trained professionals.
The review and the government?s response offer a significant opportunity to reduce the harm to children, young people and their families from drug and alcohol problems.
We are delighted to see the government?s intent to make Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) a compulsory subject and look forward to working with the government to complete the technical review.
Download all the documents:
- Drug Education; an entitlement for allÿ[pdf] the report of the Advisory Group on Drug and Alcohol Education
- Government Responseÿto the Advisory Group on Drug and Alcohol Eductionÿ[pdf]
- Effective Drug Education Surveyÿ[pdf] Drug Education Forum
- Drugs and Alcohol Education Report [pdf] Parentline Plus