Tobacco Use Prevention

School health programs to prevent tobacco use could become one of the most effective national strategies to reduce the burden of physical, emotional, and monetary expense incurred by tobacco use. School-based programs offer an opportunity to prevent the initiation of tobacco and to eliminate addiction to nicotine and the subsequent difficulties of trying to quit.

Schools should encourage children and adolescents who have not experimented with tobacco to continue to abstain from any use, enable and encourage quitting for those who are tobacco users, and help users who are unable to quit seek additional assistance to be successful.

The guidelines recommend that all schools:

  • develop and enforce a school policy on tobacco use.
  • provide instruction about the short- and long-term negative physiologic and social consequences of tobacco use, social influences on tobacco use, peer norms regarding tobacco use, and refusal skills.
  • provide tobacco-use prevention education in kindergarten through 12th grade.
  • provide program-specific training for teachers.
  • involve parents or families in support of school-based programs to prevent tobacco use.
  • support cessation efforts among students and all school staff who use tobacco.
  • assess the tobacco-use prevention program at regular intervals.

There are state and national resources that can help schools and parents in the effort to reduce youth tobacco use. Please open the tabs below to access these resources.

reACT- reACT Against Corporate Tobacco is Montana's youth empowerment movement which encourages teens to educate their peers about the truth and facts of the tobacco industry. It's education, motivation, and empowerment for Montana teens who choose to fight against corporate tobacco's deceptive tactics.

Tobacco Free Schools- Montana Office of Public Instruction

  • The Office of Public Instruction website includes a wide variety of materials for schools on how to approach tobacco use among Montana youth.
    • The Montana Tobacco Free School of Excellence Initiative was established in 2009 to help school districts and communities prevent and reduce tobacco use by promoting comprehensive tobacco free policy in schools.
    • Youth Risk Behavior Survey Data, Montana Tobacco Trends, and Youth Smokers/Nonsmokers Report
    • Health Education: Tobacco-Free Curriculum

Montana Tobacco Use Prevention Program (MTUPP) - Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services

Montana Tobacco Quit Line

  • American Indian Quitline
  • Montana Tobacco Quitline
  • My Life My Quit (Tobacco Cessation Program for teens)
  • Pregnancy Quitline

American Cancer Society

American Heart Association

American Lung Association

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Smoking and Tobacco Use Website

Calling it Quits: Resources for Teenagers and Vaping and Nicotine Cessation- This website contains a list of vaping and nicotine cessation resources available for teenagers, families, and educators.

Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids- Promotes public policies proven to reduce tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke. These include higher tobacco taxes, comprehensive smoke-free laws, well-funded tobacco prevention and stop-smoking programs, and tough regulation of tobacco products and marketing. They also expose and counter tobacco industry efforts to market to children and mislead the public.  

N-O-T: Not On Tobacco 
N-O-T is a nicotine cessation program designed specifically for teenagers in the process of quitting vaping or smoking tobacco. N-O-T groups are run by facilitators who have been trained and certified by the American Lung Association. Individuals looking for an in-person program to provide support during the quitting process can use the American Lung Association’s program information page to find a group in their community.

The quitSTART app is a free smartphone app that helps users quit smoking or vaping by providing tailored tips, inspiration, and challenges. Created by the National Cancer Institute, the quitSTART app provides tips and information, allows users to track progress and milestones, play games, and complete challenges as a needed distraction from cravings.