24% Of 11-15 Year Old Pupils Admit Taking Drugs
20 August 2019, 13:23 | Updated: 20 August 2019, 15:17
A new NHS survey reveals pupils' attitudes to alcohol, drugs and smoking, including the proportion of those who thought it's okay to get drunk on a weekly basis.
LBC Senior Reporter Matthew Thompson told Shelagh Fogarty that almost a quarter (24%) or one in ten of pupils, aged between 11-15 have reported taking drugs.
He explained that four or five per cent of 11-year-olds have admitted they've "sniffed glue" or "inhaled laughing gas."
"A small number of 13-year-olds, we're talking about one and a half per cent said they had taken cocaine
"There were similar numbers of 14-year-olds who said they had taken heroin."
24% is the same statistic as 2016, but a big increase from 2014 (14.6%).
Older children were more likely to take drugs: 9% of 11 year olds, versus 38% of 15 year olds.
Cannabis was the most commonly taken drug and 4% had taken a class A drug.
Watch Matthew Thompson's exchange with Shelagh Fogarty in the video at the top of the page.
The survey recorded its lowest ever number of 11-15 year olds who had reported smoking, which was 16%.
This was down from 19% in 2016 and down from 49% in 1996.
19% of 15 year olds thought it was acceptable to get drunk once a week.
44% of pupils said they’d ever had a drink.
Alcohol consumption levels have generally stayed stable for young people since 2016, but since 2003 the numbers have been in gradual decline.
51% of 11 to 15 year olds who have recently smoked, drunk alcohol and taken drugs reported low levels of happiness the previous day; compared to 22% of young people who had done of none of these things.