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We all want young people to succeed. Schools can help young people to find their place in a society where a wide range of drugs exist by building their knowledge, skills and resilience. Unfortunately, some young people have challenges that get in the way of their education, and drug and alcohol use is one of these.
We now know that expulsion should be the last resort because the negative effects on a young person’s future can be huge. Keeping young people in school leads to higher employment rates and longer life expectancy. Yet in 2014, the most common reason for expulsion from a New Zealand secondary school was “drugs (including substance abuse)”.
There are many things that schools can do to provide an environment where students can overcome these challenges and remain engaged in education.