Teen Tobacco Use Prevention Curricula

Smoking and COVID-19

Smoking tobacco may increase the risk of serious complications from novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Now is a good time to quit for keeps. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW or enroll online for free help.

It is anticipated that 103,000 kids currently under 18 in South Carolina will ultimately die prematurely from smoking. Statistics gathered in 2011 show that statewide:

  • 23.7 percent of all high school students smoke cigarettes
  • 33 percent of high school students and 14 percent of middle school students currently use some form of tobacco
  • 5,900 kids under age 18 become new daily smokers each year.

These rates have dramatically decreased from a high of 36.6 percent of high school students smoking in 1999, but unfortunately, statistics show that children in our state are starting to try smoking at younger ages. (For instance, in 2007, 8.7 percent of S.C. middle school students smoked - a number that was above the national average even then.)

The following initiatives are just a few examples of ways DHEC is working with schools to discourage kids from smoking and using tobacco.

School Curricula

We encourage schools to implement and incorporate evidence-based curricula into their school health classes to prevent tobacco use and addiction. We can suggest many research-based curricula, and your school can choose the one that best fits your students' needs. For information, please call (803) 898-2282.

Programs currently approved by DHEC's Division of Tobacco Prevention and Control:

The resources listed below help explain the harmful effects of tobacco use and provide suggestions on how to prevent young people from using tobacco. This information is useful for anyone interested in teaching youth and young adults about the negative health effects associated with tobacco. Use these links to national organizations, programs, toolkits and reports to design or enhance local program efforts.

  1. Stanford University Tobacco Prevention Toolkit
  2. CATCH My Breath Middle School E-cigarette Prevention
  3. Botvin Life Skills Training

National Organizations