The Tobacco Prevention Training for Educators online course welcomes back Florida educators and students to the 2016-2017 school year. Whether your classes are in full swing, or just getting started today like in Palm Beach County, we know the year will be great.
This year marks the seventh year for the statewide Florida Tobacco Prevention Training for Educators online course. Almost 800 K-12 educators from 49 districts enrolled last year in either our 30- or 60-point course, with over 300 participants completing the course and receiving continuing education units towards renewal of their certificate. Full-time teachers made up the majority of our participants, with school counselors and administrators rounding out the top three participant categories. Almost 90% of our participants were from public schools, with charter schools and private schools also listed. All subject areas were represented with elementary, English/language arts, science, physical education and social studies as the top five.
So why is teaching tobacco prevention so important? According to the 2015 Florida Youth Tobacco Survey cigarette smoking among teens in our state has seen a decrease with only 6.9% of high school students reporting current cigarette smoking, one of the lowest in the nation. But while cigarette use is decreasing, new products, such as electronic cigarettes, are “‘recruiting‘ kids who would have never smoked to vape.” Florida middle and high school students have seen drastic increases in electronic cigarette use since 2011 with 326.7% of middle school and 409.7% of high school students reporting current use. Teaching your students tobacco prevention not only educates them about the health dangers of tobacco, but helps them make informed decisions for their future.
The new school year has barely begun and already we have 35 participants from 14 districts. Take a moment to look at our course and register at the link below. If you have any questions, please call us at the number listed under “user support” on our home page.