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REVIEW 2011 HTM file
The Good Behavior Game and the future of prevention and treatment
From the researchers involved in the trials, a practitioner-friendly account of research on the classroom management technique implemented in the first years of schooling which has led to remarkably strong and persistent impacts on substance use and other problems in later life.
In their first years at school, Baltimore pupils formed teams which could earn prizes and praise for good behaviour; 14 years later many fewer young lives were marred by substance-related problems, threatened by smoking, or on track to cause serious social problems.
An audit of school drug education in Scotland in the early 2000s found that in key respects lessons departed from what research had shown was effective prevention and that despite national guidelines, there was no consistent national or even local approach.
In Hawaii and then the less promising schools of Chicago, a primary school programme aiming to improving school climate and pupil character development had substantial and, in Chicago, lasting preventive impacts – another illustration that focusing on drugs is not always the best way to prevent drug problems.
In their prevention themes British drug strategies place considerable weight on early years parenting support; whatever else such efforts may achieve, this seminal US study did not find any long-term effects on substance use.
REVIEW 2011 HTM file
Universal school-based prevention programs for alcohol misuse in young people
This authoritative review says that school programmes which work best at preventing youth drinking problems are not specifically about alcohol at all, but instead target problem behaviour more generally.
STUDY 2003 HTM file
Substances, adolescence (meta-analysis)
The most influential finding in drug education research – that interactive teaching methods have the greatest prevention impact – was confirmed by the featured report but later questioned by unpublished analyses using better statistical methods, an episode which has left concern and uncertainty in its wake.
National UK policy recommendations for pre-school initiatives to forestall later problems including those related to substance use, based partly on a review of the most promising programmes.
Alaskan Native communities were mobilised to educate their children and parents about, and to reduce the availability of, volatile substances, over-the-counter medicines and other legal substances used as intoxicants by young people. Preliminary results were encouraging.
2010 English national drug strategy: "A fundamental difference [from] those that have gone before is that instead of focusing primarily on reducing the harms caused by drug misuse, [we will] go much further and offer every support for people to choose recovery as an achievable way out of dependency."
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