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Home » Student Success » Health & Safety » Mental, Social, & Behavioral Health » Substance Use Prevention & Intervention

Substance Use Prevention & Intervention

Contact Information

Substance Abuse

Mandy Paradise

The Student Assistance Prevention-Intervention Services Program (SAPISP) is a comprehensive, integrated model of services that fosters safe school environments, promotes healthy childhood development and prevents alcohol, tobacco, and other drug abuse. The SAPISP, operated by OSPI, places Student Assistance Professionals in schools to implement comprehensive student assistance programs that address problems associated with substance use and other at-risk behaviors.

Student Assistance Program

  • Provides early alcohol and other drug prevention and intervention services to students and their families.
  • Assists in referrals to treatment providers.
  • Strengthens the transition back to school for students who have had problems of alcohol and other drug abuse.


  • Screening for high-risk behaviors.
  • Consultation for parents and staff.
  • Referrals to community services.
  • Case management with school team.
  • School-wide prevention activities.
  • Professional consultation services.
  • Informational workshops for parents, school staff, and community members.

Student Assistance Prevention-Intervention Services Program is accessed through educational service districts (ESDs). Some school districts manage their own programs. Many Student Assistance Programs are a component of the Community Prevention and Wellness Initiative (CPWI) model in their community. To learn more about the CPWI model, please see the brochure.

Funding a Student Assistance Program in your school requires leveraging district funds, utilizing Title IV Part A dollars, applying for grants, or qualifying as a CPWI location. See funding resources in the Funding Student Assistance with Title IV Part A document.

    Student Assistance Prevention-Intervention Services Program (SAPISP) Manual (330 pages)

    This publication is a guide for Washington State Student Assistance Prevention-Intervention Services Program Coordinators/Supervisors who plan to, or have, implemented a comprehensive, research-based program to address the problems of youth impacted by substance use/abuse and have experienced barriers to learning.

    2018–2019 Annual Report – Addressing Adolescent Substance Abuse: An Evaluation of Washington State's Student Assistance Prevention and Intervention Services Program (SAPISP)

    The report presents the results of evaluation activities in collaboration with the program coordinators and their staff, providing information about the implementation and effectiveness of SAPISP. The report includes documentation of program services, student outcomes, and program effectiveness.

    Student Discipline Policies: Substance Use and Possession - This one-page resource summarizes discipline policies related to student substance use and possession in schools.

    Know your Rights: A Guide for Public School Students in Washington See Chapter 8: School Searches and Police in Schools, Pages 34-44 

    RCW 28A.170 Substance Abuse Awareness Program

    RCW 28A.210.310 - Prohibition on use of tobacco products on school property

    RCW 28A.600.210 - School locker searches - Findings

    • RCW 28A.600.220 - School locker searches - No expectation of privacy
    • RCW 28A.600.240 - School locker searches - Notice and reasonable suspicion requirements

    Dedicated Marijuana Account - Funding
    Second Engrossed Second Substitute House Bill 2136

    LifeSkills Training
    Substitute Senate Bill 5883- Section 208 (8)

    Washington State Initiative Measure 502

    Section 1921 of Title XIX, Part B, Subpart II and III of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act

    NOTE: Each district will have its own policy addressing substance use on school grounds, and related sanctions for students found in violation. Please see your school's Student Handbook or inquire at your district office. 

    How are schools selected for Student Assistance Program?

    Recipients for the Student Assistance Prevention-Intervention Program are pre-selected through an assessment process designed and managed by the Health Care Authority’s Division of Behavioral Health and Recovery (DBHR). OSPI does not select the communities or schools that receive funding for Student Assistance Program. All schools selected for funded Student Assistance Program are identified in the Community Prevention and Wellness Initiative (CPWI) managed by DBHR. Alternately, some schools and districts fund and manage their own district-based Student Assistance Program. This often happens in partnership with the local ESD.

    What prevention programs can my school or district access through OSPI?

    Specific to substance use prevention, OSPI offers training and materials for districts (and schools) to implement the Botvin LIfeSkills Training. LifeSkills Training is a research-validated substance abuse prevention program proven to reduce the risks of alcohol, tobacco, drug abuse, and violence. LifeSkills is targeted to middle school age students. This grant opportunity is funded with marijuana/cannabis tax revenues and is available for schools and community organizations serving middle school aged youth. For more information on LifeSkills, please contact our staff Emily Maughan at 360-725-6030 or

    Where does the Dedicated Marijuana Account (DMA) funding go?

    The Dedicated Marijuana Account (DMA) funding specific for marijuana prevention goes to the Washington State Department of Health and the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS). DMA funds are dedicated specifically to Community Prevention and Wellness Initiative (CPWI) sites through DSHS. OSPI receives funds from DSHS to support Student Assistance Program as part of CPWI. OSPI also receives DMA funds to expand Botvin LifeSkills implementation, and to support dropout prevention.

    What about youth engagement?

    Schools may want to engage with the Spring Youth Forum and the State Prevention Summit, both hosted by the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS). The Prevention Summit and the Spring Youth Forum work in tandem to create momentum and help to encourage, reward and support youth-led prevention in local Washington communities.

    The Summit provides an excellent training and networking opportunity for youth, volunteers and professionals working toward the prevention of substance abuse, violence and other destructive behaviors, mental health promotion as well as integrating such prevention efforts with primary health care.

    How do I connect with local substance-use prevention efforts?

    There are community coalitions across Washington State that have a focus on substance-use prevention. The Community Prevention and Wellness Initiative (CPWI) is being implemented through active partnerships with counties, Educational Service Districts (ESDs), local school districts, and the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. The initiative uses proven strategies that will have a long-term, positive impact on families and others in their communities. To engage with a CPWI Coalition in your community, contact the coalition coordinator in your area by visiting this website:

    Who can I contact at my ESD to learn more about the Student Assistance Program?

    Prevention/Intervention SAPISP Coordinators