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BURLINGTON, N.C. — The Burlington Police Department is proposing a new form of discipline to address vaping in schools.

Rather than automatically punishing first offenders with in-school suspension, the police department wants to give students the choice of sitting in on a vaping lesson instead.

Officer Michael Paschal is a certified SRO and teaches D.A.R.E. in the Alamance-Burlington School System.

D.A.R.E. introduced a vaping component to its curriculums this summer.

Burlington police want to use the vaping curriculums in the proposed diversion program.

“Give them the opportunity to sit in on one of those 45-minute lessons about vaping, learn the dangers of it, how addictive it can be,” Paschal said. “Hopefully by doing that we educate them and in turn they educate their friends, but also keeping them in the classrooms where they need to be.”

Paschal says the department is currently compiling a list of first offenders and will reach out to parents to make them aware of the proposal.

They would need to give consent.

The police department is discussing the alternative with the school board.

The goal is to introduce the lessons before winter break at one of the middle schools.

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Copyright © 2019 D.A.R.E. America. All Rights Reserved.