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School smoking bans: do they help/do they harm?

https://arctichealth.org/en/permalink/ahliterature160767
Source
Drug Alcohol Rev. 2007 Nov;26(6):615-24
Publication Type
Article
Date
Nov-2007
Author
Christiane C Poulin
Author Affiliation
Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada. Christiane.Poulin@dal.ca
Source
Drug Alcohol Rev. 2007 Nov;26(6):615-24
Date
Nov-2007
Language
English
Publication Type
Article
Keywords
Achievement
Adolescent
Attitude to Health
Canada
Cross-Sectional Studies
Educational Measurement
Female
Health Promotion - legislation & jurisprudence - methods
Humans
Male
Prevalence
Public Policy
Questionnaires
Schools - legislation & jurisprudence
Smoking - legislation & jurisprudence - prevention & control
Smoking Cessation - methods
Social Control, Formal - methods
Socioeconomic Factors
Students
Abstract
The international evidence about the effectiveness of school smoking bans on youth smoking initiation is equivocal. The purpose of the present study was to examine the association between school smoking bans and smoking initiation as a health outcome as well as academic achievement as an educational outcome, taking into account socio-economic status.
This multi-level study was based on a cross-sectional self-reported anonymous data from 12,990 students who participated in the 2002 Student Drug Use Survey in the Atlantic Provinces. The main outcomes were having smoked a first whole cigarette in the year prior to the survey, and academic performance. The main independent variable at the individual- and school-levels was a school rule against smoking on school property or at school events, as reported by students.
Smoking initiation was predicted by individual-level demographic factors and by the contextual factor of attending a school with a high prevalence of established smoking, but failed to be predicted by a school smoking ban. The academic performance of students who indicated there was no school smoking ban was found to worsen as an increasing proportion of the student body indicated that such a rule existed. Lower socio-economic status was found to be an independent predictor of smoking initiation and poorer academic performance.
A school ban against smoking, in addition to not being clearly effective, might also not be entirely benign. School smoking policy should be monitored as to educational outcomes and the impact of policy on groups vulnerable to smoking.
Notes
Comment In: Drug Alcohol Rev. 2008 Sep;27(5):570-118696303
PubMed ID
17943522 View in PubMed
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