Virginia - HE K-12 curriculum—alcohol and drug use/abuse (HS): Curricula

Policy Type: 
statute; regulation; standard

State law addresses alcohol and drug use/abuse.

Code of Virginia 22.1-206. Instruction concerning drugs, alcohol, and substance abuse.

A. Instruction concerning drugs and drug abuse shall be provided by the public schools as prescribed by the Board of Education.

B. Instruction concerning the public safety hazards and dangers of alcohol abuse, underage drinking, and drunk driving shall be provided in the public schools. The Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority shall provide educational materials to the Department of Education. The Department of Education shall review and shall distribute such materials as are approved to the public schools.

Virginia Administrative Code 8 VAC 20-320-10. Health Education Program.

Elementary and secondary schools shall present a comprehensive health education program which focuses on instruction related to alcohol and drug abuse, smoking and health, personal growth and personal health, nutrition, prevention and control of disease, physical fitness, accident prevention, personal and family survival, environmental health, mental health, and consumer education. These shall be developed in accordance with procedures outlined in the Curriculum Guide for Health Education.

Virginia Administrative Code 8 VAC 20-310-10. Health Education Program.

Elementary and secondary schools shall include in the health education program instruction in drugs and drug abuse.

Therefore, the public schools of the Commonwealth shall:

  1. Be concerned with education and prevention in all areas of substance use and abuse.

  2. Establish and maintain a realistic, meaningful substance abuse prevention and education program that shall be developed and incorporated in the total education program.

  3. Establish and maintain an ongoing in-service substance abuse prevention program for all school personnel.

  4. Cooperate with government and approved private agencies involved with health of students relating to the abuse of substances.

  5. Encourage and support pupil-run organizations and activities that will develop a positive peer influence in the area of substance abuse.

  6. Create a climate whereby students may seek and receive counseling about substance abuse and related problems without fear of reprisal

Virginia 2015 Health Standards of Learning

  1. Demonstrate the knowledge and skills to make healthy decisions that reduce health risks and enhance the health of self and others. (Essential Health Concepts)

The intent of this goal is for students to become health-literate, self-directed learners who recognize the relationship between personal behavior and personal health and can skillfully apply health-promotion and disease-prevention strategies as a foundation for leading healthy and productive lives. This includes the development of the capacity to acquire, interpret, and understand health concepts, and the development and application of a range of health skills. Instruction will focus on the topics of hygiene, communicable and noncommunicable disease prevention, dental health, nutrition, sleep, drug use, physical activity, body systems, safety, intentional and unintentional injury and violence prevention, Internet safety, gangs, bullying, and preventive health care.
Virginia Department of Education

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