February 28th, 2023
Dear families of Victoria Park High School and Lethbridge Alternative Schools and Programs,
As you may be aware, vaping on school property, often in bathrooms or in hallways, is a problem facing most secondary schools across North America. Unfortunately, we are finding that at VPHS, we are no different. Due to the inconspicuous nature and the brief amount of time that is needed to use a vape, it is often difficult to track down when and where students are using the devices in the school building. As a result, people who are present in the building for learning purposes are left to contend with the toxic chemicals and smells left behind by those choosing to vape on property.
In a recent survey of the safety, well being and educational experiences of our students, vape use within the school building and on school property was identified as the number one concern from our student body.
In light of this, we have chosen to address vaping on school property to the best of our ability, taking our responsibility for student and staff health and well-being seriously. Because of this concern, the administration team of Victoria Park High School visited classes in block 2 today, and will visit during block 4 tomorrow, to share the new process of addressing vape use with students, in person. We are also posting our talking points and procedure to the school website, as well as emailing the information home.
Should you or your child have concerns with the school’s response to this current problem, please do not hesitate to reach out to me directly at the school by calling 403-327-3945. In essence, it is our goal to stop students from vaping on school property (within the building and in close proximity to the school building).
Fair Warning Re: Vaping IN THE SCHOOL AND ON SCHOOL PROPERTY VPHS Procedure:
- Vaping or using e-cigarettes is legal for people over the age of 18 and ONLY in designated usage areas OFF of school property. These designated areas for Victoria Park High School are:
- On the north side of the building, past the staff parking lot and past the fence line that guides the sidewalk
- On the south side of the building, in front of the school and off of the sidewalk that lines the school property
- Vaping on school property (within or close to the school) is illegal and will not be tolerated
- Should a student choose to vape within or close to the school building and be seen by ANY ADULT on staff, the student will be asked to surrender their vaping device immediately
- The device will be stored at the school office until a meeting is held with a guardian (or without guardians for students over the age of 18), at which point a return of the device will be discussed
- Should a student choose not to comply with handing over their device if caught vaping on school property (both inside and outside of the building), the student will be asked to leave the building and will not be allowed to return to the school until a re-entry meeting can be scheduled with guardians (or without guardians should the student be over the age of 18)
- Repeated offences will see permanent confiscation of the vaping device and may result in the removal of a student from in-person schooling
- Please contact the office about any concerns with this procedure BEFORE choosing to vape on school property
Thank you for your efforts to ensure clean air for the health and well-being of students, staff and community members on Victoria Park High School property.