The harm caused by cigarettes on children and adolescents is too substantial to be ignored. As one of the precursors of substance abuse among youths, cigarette smoking could lead to stunted growth, lack of vitality, and attention deficits. In 1987, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), which was established under the auspices of the World Health Organization, listed that the act of “chewing betel quid with tobacco” and “simultaneously smoking cigarettes and chewing betel quid” were carcinogenic to humans, affecting mainly the oral cavity, pharynx, and esophagus. In order to strengthen school-driven health promotion plans that are built upon the integration of life skills into classrooms, there is a need to develop more diverse and adaptive intervention strategies and/or guidance on education on the harmful effects of cigarettes and betel nuts. It is also necessary to integrate various resources, learn from past experience, and establish an inter-school platform for resource-sharing for schools to empower parents, teachers, and students, thereby reducing cigarette smoking or betel-quid chewing amongst students and improving the health of both students and faculty members.
Mainly targeted at children and/or adolescents from primary to high schools, this plan covers all the six major aims of the schools’ health enhancement scheme and expects to accomplish four goals:
I. Development of media and teaching strategies for adaptive education on the prevention of the harmful effects of cigarettes and betel quid
To develop courses and teaching strategies aimed at students in different curricula, with different motives, and exhibiting different behavioral experiences. Appropriate intervention education modules will be dispensed after evaluation to help students gain life skills.
II. Enhancement of the teaching expertise of schools’ on-site faculty team
To hold seminars/workshops for teachers to empower the faculty team through training courses with situational teaching and case studies components, or by means of practical activities such as pre-class preparations, class observation, and discussion rounds.
III. Improvement in service capabilities and administrative efficiency
To gather together competent staff from the county’s education bureau and members from the schools for the promotion of the plan; compile brochures to provide case-by-case guidance for smoking and betel quid chewing on campus, which will contain procedures and/modules consisting of discovery – guidance and rehabilitation – results tracing, as a reference point in the schools’ management practices.
IV. Establishment of a resource network for the prevention of smoking and betel quid chewing on campus
To examine and integrate relevant resources for the purpose of guarding against the harmful effects of smoking and betel quid chewing, and establish a resource network for the education against smoking and betel quid chewing on campus.