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Tobacco Use Prevention Education (TUPE)

The purpose of the TUPE program is to reduce youth tobacco use by helping young people grades 6-12 make healthful tobacco-related decisions through tobacco-specific educational instruction and activities that build knowledge as well as social skills and youth development assets.

While the primary focus of the program is tobacco prevention, including e-cigarettes/vape pens, our strategies are comprehensive and include information on alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs. Students are also building a wide variety of important and relevant skills including communication, planning, public speaking, and decision making.

What MDUSD Does - Our Comprehensive Program


Comprehensive Programs


MDUSD's TUPE program includes classroom-based substance abuse prevention programs, intervention and cessation services, and youth development activities, such as peer education.

  • Classroom-Based Prevention Programs: Project ALERT (middle school) is a research-validated drug prevention program and proven to reduce the experimental and continued use of drugs. Research has also demonstrated the Project Toward No Drug Abuse (high school) program’s impact on reductions in cigarette smoking, alcohol use, marijuana use, hard drug use, and violence.
  • Intervention Support & Cessation Resources: Brief Intervention is a short-term, one-on-one intervention that consists of 2-3 sessions for young people who use tobacco and/or other drugs. It utilizes motivational interviewing, cognitive behavior therapy, and the stages of change model to meet the needs of adolescents. We also promote cessation in a number of ways – referring current users to voluntary Brief Intervention sessions and providing cessation information and resources, and implementing school-wide “Cessation Campaigns.”
  • Youth Development: Teams of students from every middle school, high school, and non-traditional (continuation/alternative) school are trained as TUPE Peer Educators each year. These students deliver anti-tobacco messages at their school through classroom presentations and school-wide events. In addition, the County Office also co-coordinates a countywide Youth Health Coalition, CourAGE. CourAGE members represent schools/districts from throughout the county.


  • Tobacco product use is started and established primarily during adolescence.
    • Each day in the U.S. about 2,000 youth under 18 years of age smoke their first cigarette and more than 300 youth under 18 years of age become daily cigarette smokers.
  • Flavorings in tobacco products can make them more appealing to youth.
    • In 2014, 73% of high school students and 56% of middle school students who used tobacco products in the past 30 days reported using a flavored tobacco product during that time.
  • Recent increases in the use of e-cigarettes is driving increases in tobacco product use among youth.
    • The number of middle and high school students using e-cigarettes rose from 2.1 million in 2017 to 3.6 million in 2018—a difference of about 1.5 million youth.

For more information, please click here to visit the webpage for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Smoking & Tobacco Use.


We remain committed to addressing tobacco use as a social justice issue and continue to work to counter the tobacco industry’s predatory marketing tactics to try to hook new users. We ensure that all students are reached directly through classroom-based prevention programs, intervention and cessation services, and engaged in anti-tobacco youth development opportunities. We also develop additional activities and resources to further address the needs of those most impacted by tobacco use. Despite past and present challenges, we have the people, programs, supports, and partnerships in place to continue to meet our goal of reducing tobacco use. Our efforts thus far have proven to be successful and there is still more work to be done.

Contact your student's school administrator for more information about TUPE activities and events on their campus.


Classroom-Based Prevention Programs Curriculum

  • High School (9th grade) - Project TND (Toward No Drug Abuse): Research has also demonstrated the Project Towards No Drug Abuse (high school) program's impact on reductions in cigarette smoking, alcohol use, marijuana use, hard drug use, and violence.
  • Middle School (7th and 8th grades) - Project Alert: Project ALERT (middle school) is a research-validated drug prevention program and proven to reduce the experimental and continued use of drugs.

TUPE Monthly Themes

  • September - Stop Calling It Vapor!
  • October - Tobacco is a drug too!
  • November - Break the Cycle!
  • December - The True Cost of Tobacco
  • January - Make a Healthy Resolution!
  • February - Keep Your Heart Healthy!
  • March - Kick Butts!
  • April - Tobacco Hurts the Earth!
  • May - Global Impact of Tobacco
  • June - Reflection/Celebration #FinishIt

Tobacco Cessation/Quit Resources

  • California Smokers' HelpLine: Free services for teens and adults, including self-help materials and one-on-one counseling.  Services are available in multiple languages.   
  • Anyone in Contra Costa County can dial 2-1-1 for direct cessation referrals, as well as access to all other local health and human services.  See the 2-1-1 Flyer
  • English: 1-800-NO BUTTS (1-800-662-8887) | Spanish: 1-800-45 NO FUME (1-800-456-6386)
  • Chew Tobacco: 1-800-844-CHEW (1-800-844-2439)
  • Smart Phone Apps: NCI QuitPal, QuitSTART, QuitGuide
  • Smokefree TXT Support for Teens: Text QUIT to iQuit (47848)