Jenks Schools Says E-Cigarette Use Is Growing Among Younger Students
JENKS, Oklahoma - Juuling (jewel-ing) is becoming a big problem for schools in Green Country.
The JUUL is a form of an e-cigarette. Juuling is a growing issue across America, but what's so concerning for school leaders at Jenks, is that it's not only trending at the middle school and high school level it's also catching the attention of 11 and 12-year-olds.
The Juul can be sneaky.
"Very easy to conceal. They fit in the palm of your hand, even," says Jenks School Counselor Paula Lau.
They're small, they look like a USB drive, and they don't put off near as much smoke as a regular e-cigarette.
"A kid could actually be using it in class right in front of their teacher, and the teacher would be unaware they're using them," says Lau.
One of the scariest parts to Jenks school counselor Paula Lau is the high concentration of nicotine.
"100% is nicotine is a terrible, terrible addiction. And once you get started, it's really, really hard to stop," says Lau.
The website says Juuling is not for new smokers. In fact, it's said just one of these pods had the same amount of nicotine as a pack of cigarettes. The school district says there's an increase in Juuling violations every year and they have had 30 since the start of this school year.
"We have violations almost on a daily basis now," says Lau.
For the first time ever, the district says they had a Juuling violation at an intermediate elementary school which means 5th and 6th graders.
"Teachers, if they're not aware, wouldn't even think twice about those devices," says Lau.
Lau says there's not enough research on how harmful Juuling can be.
"They'll say, well nobody really knows whether or not it's bad for you or not. And I can't look them directly in the eye and say 100% that I do know," says Lau.
But she can say for sure that it's highly addictive and it's not allowed on any Jenks Campus, or Tulsa Campus.
"I hope kids will listen and pay attention," says Lau.