Details of Trial Scheme on School Drug Testing in Tai Po District announced

     Commissioner for Narcotics, Ms Sally Wong; Under Secretary for Education, Mr Kenneth Chen; and Deputy Secretary for Education, Mrs Betty Ip, together with representatives from the Social Welfare Department, the Department of Health and a Counselling Centre for Psychotropic Substance Abusers (CCPSA) gave a briefing on the details of the Trial Scheme on School Drug Testing in Tai Po District, and the scheme's protocol and consent form, to teachers and school social workers at a Tai Po secondary school today (October 19).  

     Ms Sally Wong said, "In the past few months, the Narcotics Division, Security Bureau and Education Bureau held a series of consultation and sharing sessions to exchange views with the relevant stakeholders on the trial scheme details.  We have refined the details of the trial scheme after we have fully considered the views of relevant parties."

     She said that the development of the scheme was guided by four principles, namely 1) helping students in their best interest; 2) voluntary participation; 3) keeping personal information strictly confidential; and 4) professional testing and support services for students.

     "The purposes of the trial scheme are to enhance the resolve of students who have not taken any drugs to continue to stay away from drugs.  Secondly, for students abusing drugs, the scheme can trigger their motivation to seek help and provide appropriate professional support to help them kick the habit early," she said.

     She added that the trial scheme was part of a comprehensive anti-drug strategy.  The Government had all along been implementing a five-pronged anti-drug strategy, comprising preventive education and publicity, treatment and rehabilitation, anti-drug law and law enforcement, external co-operation, and research, to reduce the supply and demand of drugs.

     Mr Kenneth Chen said, "Full protection of students' privacy is in place in the refined trial scheme details.  The trial scheme can also let us consolidate experience as a reference for wider implementation of drug testing in schools.

     "Co-operation and support from all sides is of paramount importance to the trial scheme.  The trial scheme is conducive to a drug-free campus culture which will help students grow in a healthy learning environment."

     Starting today, representatives from the CCPSA and various government departments will organise briefing sessions for the 23 secondary schools in Tai Po District to let teaching staff, students and parents further understand the details of the scheme.

     To enhance understanding of the scheme by secondary school students, parents and relevant parties in Tai Po District, the Narcotics Division, Security Bureau and Education Bureau have produced a video and a leaflet introducing the scheme's details.  The video and leaflet will be uploaded onto the webpage of the Narcotics Division, Security Bureau (

     The protocol and frequently asked questions of the trial scheme will also be uploaded onto the webpage of the Narcotics Division, Security Bureau.

Ends/Monday, October 19, 2009
Issued at HKT 16:59