Monday 19 August 2019

Garda sniffer dogs to sweep Dublin school for drugs

No previous incidents of drug use in school - but principal is responding to concerns

Stock photo
Stock photo

Daire Courtney

Garda sniffer dogs will sweep a Dublin school next week in response to concerns in the community that drugs are being sold in schools.

The Principal of Old Bawn Community School in Tallaght revealed the plan to sweep the school with sniffer dogs before Christmas in a letter to parents this week, according to Echo.ie.

“We’re looking to reassure staff, the Board and parents that OBCS is a drug-free zone,” Paul Crone, the school principal, told the website.

There have been no previous incidents of drug use or sale in OBCS.

The principal’s letter clarified that the sweep is a preventative measure in a response to an article in The Echo last month, which claimed that teenagers in the area are being used to transport and deal drugs.

“We’re one of the best performing schools in the area when it comes to students progressing onto third level education and alongside protecting the students, we want to also protect their education and support them in continuing to perform well,” Mr Crone continued.

According to the letter, Gardaí will sweep the school before the Christmas holidays and again in January and February to “educate staff on what they need to look out.”

The school’s policy is to expel any student in possession of illegal substances, but Mr Crone stressed that they are also implementing educational measures to prevent drug activity in the school.

“We have also received support from YODA [Youth Drug and Alcohol Service] and the Dominic’s Drug Project, which will run a programme with [3rd to 6th year] students on drugs and how to be resilient and make the right choices,” he said.

“We’ll be running these programmes in January and February and as drugs is a delicate issue and people can be afraid to talk, students will be broken up into small groups.”

A spokesperson from An Garda Síochána told Independent.ie that they cannot comment on named organisations.

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