A carefully considered tobacco-free schools policy is the foundation of a comprehensive approach to tobacco prevention in schools. Policy is the mechanism that allows consistent standards and enforcement procedures to be passed from one school administrator to the next. People and programs may come and go, but a policy lasts and can provide guidance to new leaders.
Development of the written policy is an important first step but what is key to successful implementation is the communication and enforcement of the policy. Students, staff, parents, and the community need to know the provisions of the policy, why the policy is important, and why it is important for the school setting to be tobacco-free.