School Board Policy 419 -
Tobacco-Free Environment

Adopted: April 29, 1996  REVISED: august 27, 2001  Revised: december 14, 2009  Revised: november 14, 2011  

I. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to maintain a learning and working environment that is tobacco free.

II. General Statement of Policy

  1. It shall be a violation of this policy for any student, teacher, administrator, other school personnel, or visitor to the school district or person to smoke or use tobacco, tobacco-related devices, or electronic cigarettes in a public school. This prohibition extends to all facilities, whether owned, rented, or leased, and all vehicles that a school district owns, leases, rents, contracts for, or controls. In addition, this prohibition includes vehicles used, in whole or in part, for work purposes, during hours of school operation, if more than one person is present. This prohibition includes all school district property and all off-campus events sponsored by the school district.

  2. It shall be a violation of this policy for any enrolled student to possess any type of tobacco, tobacco-related device, or electronic cigarettes in a public school. This prohibition extends to all facilities, whether owned, rented, or leased, and all vehicles that a school district owns, leases, rents, contracts for, or controls and includes vehicles used, in whole or in part, for work purposes, during hours of school operation, if more than one person is present. This prohibition includes all school district property and all off-campus events sponsored by the school district.

  3. The school district will act to enforce this policy and to discipline or take appropriate action against any student, teacher, administrator, school personnel, or person who is found to have violated this policy.

  4. The school district will not solicit or accept any contributions or gifts of money, curricula, materials, or equipment from companies that directly manufacture and are identified with tobacco products, devices, or electronic cigarettes. The school district will not promote or allow promotion of tobacco products or e-cigarettes on school property or at school-sponsored events.

  5. Instruction to discourage the use of tobacco shall be included in the education provided for all students. Staff responsible for teaching tobacco-use prevention shall have adequate training and participate in ongoing professional development activities to effectively deliver the education program as planned.

III. Definitions

  1. “Electronic Cigarette” means any oral device that provides a vapor of liquid nicotine, lobelia, and/or other similar substance, and the use of inhalation of which simulates smoking. The term shall include any such devices, whether they are manufactured, distributed, marketed, or sold as e-cigarettes, e-cigars, e-pipes, or under another product name or descriptor.

  2. “Smoking” means inhaling smoke from any lighted cigar, cigarette, pipe, or any other lighted tobacco or plant product. Smoking includes carrying a lighted cigar, cigarette, pipe, or any other lighted smoking equipment.

  3. “Tobacco” means cigarettes and any product containing, made, or derived from tobacco that is intended for human consumption, whether chewed, smoked, absorbed, dissolved, inhaled, snorted, sniffed, or ingested by any other means, or any component, part or accessory of a tobacco product; cigars; cheroots; stogies; perique; granulated, plug cut, crimp cut, ready rubbed, and other smoking tobacco; snuff; snuff flour; cavendish; plug and twist tobacco; fine cut and other chewing tobacco; shorts; refuse scraps, clippings, cuttings and sweepings of tobacco; and other kinds and forms of tobacco.

  4. “Tobacco-related devices” means cigarette papers or pipes for smoking.

IV. Exception

  1. It shall not be a violation of this policy for an Indian adult to light tobacco on school district property as a part of a traditional Indian spiritual or cultural ceremony. An Indian is a person who is a member of an Indian tribe as defined under Minnesota law.

  2. A violation of this policy does not occur when an adult nonstudent possesses a tobacco or nicotine product that has been approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for sale as a tobacco cessation product, as a tobacco dependence product, or for other medical purposes, and is being marketed and sold solely for such an approved purpose.

V. Enforcement

  1. All individuals including visitors on school premises shall adhere to this policy.

  2. Students who violate this tobacco-free policy shall be subject to school district discipline procedures.

  3. School district administrators and other school personnel who violate this tobacco-free policy shall be subject to school district discipline procedures.

  4. School district action taken for violation of this policy will be consistent with requirements of applicable collective bargaining agreements, Minnesota or federal law, and school district policies.

  5. Persons who violate this tobacco-free policy may be referred to the building administration or other school district supervisory personnel responsible for the area or program at which the violation occurred.

  6. School administrators may call the local law enforcement agency to assist with enforcement of this policy. Smoking or use of any tobacco product in a public school is a violation of the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act and/or the Freedom to Breathe Act of 2007 and is a petty misdemeanor. A court injunction may be instituted against a repeated violator.

  7. No persons shall be discharged, refused to be hired, penalized, discriminated against, or in any manner retaliated against for exercising any right to a smoke- free environment provided by the Freedom to Breathe Act of 2007 or other law.

VI. Dissemination of Policy

  1. The school district will develop a method of discussing this policy with students and employees.

  2. This policy shall appear in the student and staff handbook.

  3. Appropriate signage shall be posted throughout the district and building entrances and other highly visible locations.

  4. The school or district shall make tobacco-free reminder announcements at school events at appropriate intervals throughout the events, when possible.

Legal References: 
Minn. Stat. § 144.413, Subd. 1b and 4 (Definitions)
Minn. Stat. § 144.416 (Responsibilities of Proprietors)
Minn. Stat. § 144.4165 (Tobacco Products Prohibited in Public Schools)
Minn. Stat. § 144.417 (Commissioner of Health, Enforcement, Penalties)
Minn. Stat. § 609.685 (Sale of Tobacco to Children)

Cross References: 
WBLASB Policy 403 (Discipline, Suspension and Dismissal of School District Employees)
WBLASB Policy 506 (Student Discipline)
MSBA Service Manual, Chapter 2, Students; Rights, Responsibilities and Behavior