3. Alcohol education in schools

Health education is one of three subjects in the Health and Physical Education learning area (HPE) of The New Zealand Curriculum that is mandated until the end of Year 10. 

Alcohol and drug education is within the ‘mental health’ key area of learning within HPE.

There are a range of evidence-based alcohol education resources to support education in high school settings in New Zealand.

The most comprehensive is a whole-of-school, evidence-based programme called Tūturu - the Tūturu resources have been developed and evaluated in New Zealand and are freely available to support schools. These include resources to integrate learning across curriculum areas, strengthen pastoral care, consult with communities, and strengthen pastoral care pathways. Contact the NZ Drug Foundation for more information.

Other resources include:

  • Alcohol and other drug education programmes - guide for schools – available here
  • New Zealand Health Education Association Position Statement: Mental health education in The New Zealand Curriculum – available here

We recognise the many competing demands that schools face in the delivery of alcohol education. In relation to external providers, peer reviewed critiques of the resources that underpin the alcohol industry 'Smashed' programme have been published in the New Zealand Medical Journal and are available at:

The practice of the alcohol industry as health educator: a critique

Why are alcohol companies in our schools?