School officials cracking down on discipline for students caught with vapes, e-cigs

Published: Aug. 17, 2023 at 5:38 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 17, 2023 at 6:07 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - After years of school districts cracking down on the use of vapes, new Texas legislation will force schools to crack down even harder.

This year, if a child is found with a vape or e-cigarette, that students could end up facing some big consequences shedding light on a growing problem.

“You know I think our legislatures, they’re trying to curb some of the things that happened with vapes,” says Amarillo ISD Police Chief, Paul Bourquin.

The consequences that students are looking to face this year for being caught are much more serious than in the past.

“You know it’s not, I mean it’s not good for students obviously and it’s a health concern so any vape device and you know they’re gonna go to that AEP placement,” said Chief Bourquin.

The amount of days an Amarillo ISD student will spend in the disciplinary alternative education program for their first time offense is three days.

Schools like River Road ISD are taking an even bigger approach to taking care of the vaping pandemic.

“Since we had already tightened up on it, all we really had to do was kind change that so what we decided to do is: first offense is 10 days of DAEP, second offense is 20, third offense is 30 and it’ll just keep progressing by 10 day increments like that,” River Road ISD Middle School Principal, Rachel Freeman

River Road ISD’s Middle School Principal says she hopes both students and parents understand the seriousness of the law.

Freeman says she’s hopeful the law will make a difference across their campuses, however she does have some concerns.

“Right now like for middle school we have 10 slots, high school has 10 slots and that’s really all you can fit and manage in those classrooms and if the numbers don’t go down from what they were last year, DEAP will fill up very quickly,” said Freeman.

She went on to say she hopes both students and parents understand just how serious the law is.

“Any type of vape or paraphernalia, so even if they have the cartridge and not the actual pen, or the pen and not the cartridge. Any piece of a vape is mandatory DAEP,’ says Freeman.

Both schools want to remind parents to sit down and have a conversation about the consequences of vaping.