Wigan secondary schools needed for NHS England’s smoking and vaping survey

Secondary schools in Wigan and the rest of the North West are being called upon to participate in the NHS England’s “Smoking, Drinking, and Drug use among Young People” survey, being run by Ipsos.
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The data from the survey plays a critical role in the development of policies relating to smoking, vaping, drinking, and drugs, covering prevalence, behaviour, trends, and attitudes amongst school-aged children.

This comes at a time of increased focus on the dangers of vaping to children and a renewed effort from policymakers and healthcare experts on how to address them.

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Since its inaugural publication in 1982, the survey has been an important source of information for government departments, local authorities, charities, and academic institutions as well as informing health and education policy. For instance, in 2015, the survey data was used to help make the case for the legislation which banned adults smoking in cars when children are present.

The 2023 survey launched in September and schools across the country have begun signing up and taking part.

For the survey to be representative of the whole country, Ipsos is urging schools across North West to sign-up, so that young people in the region can have their voices heard and be part of the national conversation on vaping, smoking, drinking and drug use.

All schools can access a lesson plan created by the PSHE Association. It is designed to address aspects of the Department for Education’s statutory guidance for Relationships, Sex and Health Education. A second lesson plan will be made available to schools who take part in the Smoking, Drinking and Drug Use Survey. Additionally, schools will receive a bespoke report showing how their school’s survey results compare to the national results.

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Gary Childs, Assistant Director, Data and Analytics at NHS England said: “The insight about behaviours and attitudes that this survey offers is essential to the formation of effective health and education policy.

Without the participation of schools, we would not be able to provide this crucial insight and therefore we are extremely grateful to all the schools and students who take up this opportunity.”

Sam Clemens, Research Director at Ipsos said: “We have been really pleased with the successful launch of the survey, which has had record sign-ups.

"Over the coming months, it is important for us to be able to deliver insightful data that accurately tracks trends across the country to help the development of policy on vaping, smoking, drinking, and drug use.

"We are therefore encouraging secondary schools in the North West to take part in the survey, so that there is an accurate picture from the region.