Attitudes to Substance Use
The proportion of pupils who think it is 'ok' to try drinking or getting drunk has shown a small decline since 2010. The greatest decline is in the proportion of pupils thinking it is 'ok' to try smoking. This is true among both age groups and genders.
Figure 16 Proportion of 15 year old pupils who thought it was 'ok' for someone their age to try… (2006-2015)
By some margin, pupils are more likely to think that it is 'ok' to try drinking than to try getting drunk, smoking or taking drugs.
Although it was much less common for pupils to say that it was 'ok' for someone their age to try drugs, there has been a notable increase since 2013 in the proportion of 15 year olds who think it is ok to try taking cannabis.
Figure 17 Proportion of 15 year old pupils who thought it was 'ok' for someone their age to try… (2006-2015)
15 year old girls were more likely than boys to think it was 'ok' to try smoking a cigarette, drinking alcohol and getting drunk, whereas 15 year olds boys were more likely to think that it was 'ok' to try sniffing glue, taking cannabis and taking cocaine. There were few differences between 13 year old boys and 13 year old girls.