The Children’s Rights Alliance for England in their review of government action on the meeting the Convention on the Rights of the Child mark the government as having overseen a “significant deterioration in law or policy in the past year” in two of the three sections on drugs and alcohol.
They say that there has been a worsening of the position in relation to:
- providing accurate and objective information on drugs and alcohol to young people; and
- ensuring support is given to those attempting to end dependency on toxic substances
They also say there has been no significant no significant change in law or policy in the past year when it comes to studying the causes of substance misuse in order to provide targeted preventative measures.
Of particular concern to the authors is the impact of the increasing number of academies on health education. They say:
The deregulation of education means that increasing numbers of academies and free schools are not under an obligation to, for example, teach key aspects of the curriculum in relation to sex and relationships, drugs and alcohol and citizenship. It also means that schools are subject to weaker accountability and oversight mechanisms.
The report quotes the evidence that we gave to the Home Affairs Select Committee on drug education and prevention.