Question: Why is ASAA implementing this program?
Answer: Because of numerous requests from schools, coaches and fans for a consistent statewide policy on Tobacco, Alcohol and Controlled Substances. Alaska ranked #1 in teen use according to a 2006 survey by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Question: When does the program go into effect?
Answer: Goes into effect at the beginning of the school year, or at the beginning of a school’s first sport or activity season if it begins prior to the beginning of school.
Question: Will this program be in effect state-wide?
Answer: Yes, in every ASAA member school. There are currently over 200 member schools.
Question: When is a student first subject to the policy?
Answer: A student is subject beginning with the first interscholastic participation during the school year.
Question: Is the policy in effect during the summer vacation?
Answer: No, the policy is in effect only during a school’s calendar year.
Question: If an activity begins before the first day of school, or extends past the last day of school, is the policy in effect?
Answer: Yes, for only those students who are participating in an activity.
Question: When a student’s activity season is over, is the student still subject to the policy?
Answer: Yes. Once a student first participates, the student is subject to the policy for the remainder of his/her high school years in Alaska, whether currently participating or not, except during summer vacation.
Question: How will students and parents learn about the program?
Answer: By participating in an orientation session prior to the first day of participation.
Question: Will students and parents have to go through the pre-participation orientation prior to each season of participation, or is once a year enough?
Answer: According to the policy, students and parents must do it annually.
Question: What if a student (or parent) chooses to not participate in the orientation, nor to sign the Acknowledgement Form?
Answer: The student will be ineligible for interscholastic activities participation.
Question: Are there penalties for violation of the policy?
Answer: Yes. There are four steps of violation and each one carries a penalty and has a corresponding Educational Requirement.
Question: Are violations of the Tobacco Policy penalized differently from Alcohol and Controlled Substance violations?
Answer: Yes, though only at the Violation One level.
Question: Why is Tobacco treated differently?
Answer: Because the addiction to tobacco is pervasive in much of rural Alaska, and because this program is about supporting students’ needs to reduce at-risk behaviors, ASAA is making this distinction.
Question: How is the Violation One penalty different for Tobacco violations?
Answer: A student on Violation One for a Tobacco violation must stay on Violation One until the student can demonstrate 10 calendar days without a subsequent Tobacco violation.
Question: Will violations be cumulative?
Answer: Yes, they will be cumulative and progressive throughout a student’s entire high school career in Alaska, regardless of which member school he/she attends.
Question: If a student has a violation, does the school report it to ASAA?
Answer: Yes, once the violation has been determined and any school appeal process has been completed, the school must report the violation within three calendar days.
Question: How will a student’s violations be tracked from school to school?
Answer: Student records will be maintained in a secure database, accessible only to the authorized school administrator at the student’s school, and to ASAA.
Question: Are schools required to provide the educational components for student violators?
Answer: No, ASAA provides web-based components.