Sustainability of outdoor school ground smoking bans at secondary schools: A mixed-method study

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Abstract

Although increasing numbers of countries are implementing outdoor school ground smoking bans at secondary schools, less attention is paid to the post-implementation period even though sustainability of a policy is essential for long-term effectiveness. Therefore, this study assesses the level of sustainability and examines perceived barriers/facilitators related to the sustainability of an outdoor school ground smoking ban at secondary schools.
A mixed-method design was used with a sequential explanatory approach. In phase I, 438 online surveys were conducted and in phase II, 15 semi-structured interviews were obtained from directors of relevant schools. ANOVA (phase I) and a thematic approach (phase II) were used to analyze data.
Level of sustainability of an outdoor school ground smoking ban was high at the 48% Dutch schools with an outdoor smoking ban. Furthermore, school size was significantly associated with sustainability. The perceived barriers/facilitators fell into three categories: (i) smoking ban implementation factors (side-effects, enforcement, communication, guidelines and collaboration), (ii) school factors (physical environment, school culture, education type and school policy) and (iii) community environment factors (legislation and social environment).
Internationally, the spread of outdoor school ground smoking bans could be further promoted. Once implemented, the ban has become ‘normal’ practice and investments tend to endure. Moreover, involvement of all staff is important for sustainability as they function as role models, have an interrelationship with students, and share responsibility for enforcement. These findings are promising for the sustainability of future tobacco control initiatives to further protect against the morbidity/mortality associated with smoking.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43–49
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Volume28
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Keywords

  • ADOLESCENTS
  • ASSOCIATION
  • EXPOSURE
  • HEALTH-PROGRAMS
  • INNOVATIONS
  • MULTILEVEL ANALYSIS
  • POLICIES
  • RESTRICTIONS

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