Why is student drug use important to monitor?
Data repeatedly show that students and youth more commonly use alcohol and drugs than any other age group.
Student drug use surveys provide essential information about the prevalence and harms associated with substance use among youth who attend school.
Surveys are used to monitor emerging trends and to inform decision making about policies, programs and services to improve the health outcomes of children and youth.
Surveys on student drug use have been conducted intermittently over the years in nine of Canada’s 10 provinces, as well as nationally. These include the BC Adolescent Health Survey; the Alberta Youth Experience Survey; the Manitoba Student Alcohol and Drug Use Survey; the Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey; the Québec Health Survey of High School Students; the Student Drug Use Survey in the Atlantic Provinces; the Canadian Student Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey; and the Health Behaviour of School-Aged Children study.
Student Drug Use Surveys Working Group
In 2003, CCSA formed an expert group to support the collection of student drug use data in provinces and territories. The Student Drug Use Surveys (SDUS) Working Group is composed of representatives from provinces and territories that regularly conduct provincial and national student surveys. The SDUS Working Group continues to act as a forum to exchange information on survey design and methodology, and to explore special topics through the data collected by the surveys.
Since its creation, the group has:
The group’s most recent report, Urban and Rural Student Substance Use, explores the differences and similarities of substance use among students who attend urban and rural schools.