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No smoking: Nanjing students, teachers told
By Bao Xinyan (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-09-02 01:08

Students in the capital of East China's Jiangsu Province will return to schools with cleaner air.

A no-smoking policy has been developed for primary and middle schools in Nanjing to mark the beginning of the new semester.

A document issued by the local patriotic sanitation campaign committee and the education bureau during the summer holiday sets out no-smoking areas, measures taken to forbid smoking.

The no-smoking areas include classrooms, reading rooms, laboratories, offices, meeting rooms, playgrounds and other educational places.

The policy covers students, teachers, general staff, parents and guests.

According to Xu Ping, head of Health Station of Nanjing Middle and Primary Schools, measures have been taken to make sure the no-smoking policy is strictly implemented.

"We have made special picture posters and teaching materials for the policy," she said. "The pictures are posted in windows and some noticeable places. And the teaching materials are used in the classes and lectures in middle schools."

Those who violate the policy face fines or sanctions.

Both the patriotic sanitation campaign committee and the education bureau are responsible for the examination and supervision of the implementation of no-smoking policy.

When a school applies to be designated as a no-smoking school, it is examined by the supervision department. After passing the examination, the supervision departments will put up a sign identifying it as a "Nanjing No-Smoking School."

"There are six primary schools and six middle schools making their applications in the first day," Xu said, "we plan to urge the key schools and experimental schools to make their applications first, for they will play an exemplary role."

Xu also indicated that there are many difficulties in the implementation of the policy.

"Some boy students regard smoking as the behaviour of men, and some technical secondary school students think smoking is a good way to dispel melancholy. We should do something to change their opinions," she emphasized.

Statistics show that there are more than 320 million smokers in the country.

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