SAUGUS, MASS. (WHDH) - With vaping-related illnesses on the rise in the state, Saugus Public Schools officials are taking action to address the problem — starting in elementary schools.

The district is now incorporating vaping into its wellness curriculum, starting in the 4th grade.

“Our job is to not just punish or set the consequences, but to educate and see what we can we do to help it,” said Saugus School Superintendent David DeRuosi

Officials say vape pens can be disguised as USBs or can be used at home or in the middle of the school day.

“We have to get involved, we need to be proactive and take a hard look at this and protecting the children,” said School Committe Chair Jeannie Meredith.

The district is hoping to teach students how to help each other when faced with the decision to vape. Some parents said they like the idea of starting the education and prevention at a young age.

“I don’t think they know enough about what’s really in the vape product itself, so I think it’s great to make sure they know it’s bad for your health,” said Jessica Peacock.

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