Drug use by students is a serious concern for schools and the community. Statistics released under the Official Information Act by the Ministry of Education show that the number of students stood down or suspended for drug use has been increasing since 2007.
In 2007,1017 students were stood down and 942 suspended for drugs use and substance abuse. By 2009 this had jumped to 1420 being stood down and 1074 suspended. In 2010 statstics up to October showed 1451 stand-downs and 1036 suspensions for drug offences.
109 New Zealand primary and intermediate schools stood down or suspended students for drug-related offending last year.
Headlines of "Primary pupils in drug figures" does not make for good reading and reports children as young as seven being suspended.
The use of a drug dog can be a high profile deterrent, which sends a clear message to students regarding the possession and use of drugs. It also reinforces the seriousness that the school places on providing a safe environment free of drug hazards and risk for students, staff and visitors to the school.
Dogs provide a very high profile and deterrent factor that implies that you are serious about having a drug free campus environment.
Speed of clearances.
Lockers and desks do not have to be opened.
Non discriminatory tool.
Minimal disruption to staff and students.
If there are any indications given by the dog, or drugs are located, the subsequent follow up is left with the school.
Our dogs are trained to an internationally recognised guidelines.
We use qualified assessors during annual testing.
Our dog handlers are professionally trained handlers with recognised backgrounds and expertise in their fields.
We are available at short notice when issues arise.
We work with specialist partners who can provide an educational presentation on illicit drugs to staff, students and parents.
We can provide guidelines to schools on how to fairly advise students and the community of a pending visit by drug dogs.
We can also implement and administer a random visit schedule of a specified number of visits per school over a defined period.
It is our aim to help schools achieve a safer environment, free from drug hazards and drug risk, so schools can concentrate on what they do best.