Should High School Students be Drug Tested?
Many schools feel that the students that play sports are the leaders in their schools and should have to take a drug test to be eligible to play sports. The schools do not want drug users on high school sports teams because in many cases, students on the teams are the ones that are looked up to in their schools and are supposed to set the example for others. Drug use by people playing sports also has very serious health consequences on and off the playing field.
The teachers noticed a sharp rise in students’ drug use in the late 1980s and in disciplinary problems. The school tried to teach the dangers of drugs by bringing in speakers with anti-drug messages and offered special drug deterrence classes. Local police brought in special drug sniffing dogs to detect drugs and the problems still existed.
The students in the school were very unhappy with the suspicion of drug use and began to rebel. They caused trouble in classrooms and administration blamed it on drug use. The teachers proposed a student drug testing policy for all students and it was eventually narrowed down to just athletes.
Under the policy, any students wishing to play sports in junior or senior high would subject themselves to a urine test so the school could test for drugs. Any students that did not wish to submit themselves to the test would not be eligible to play on a sports team. In addition, 10% of all athletes would be selected each week and tested again.
The testing would be conducted in an empty locker room and would be overseen by an adult of the same sex. Students would first have to fill out a specimen control form, which gives each student their own identification number. The students list any prescription medication being taken and a sample of urine given. The samples are sent to an independent laboratory and tested under very strict procedures. Lab results are 99.9% accurate. The only people that know the results of the samples are the superintendent, principals vice principals, and athletic directors. The police authorities would have no information on results from the drug tests. A second test would be given to any student that tested positive the first time. If the test came back negative the second time, the school would take no further actions and the student would be allowed to play on the team.
Any student that tested positive the second time would have to have a principal meet with their parents. The students then have the option of going through a six-week drug rehab program and subjecting themselves to weekly urinalysis. If the student does not choose choice number one, he is not allowed to play sports for the remainder of that time and is automatically suspended for a two-year period.
Students feel that the new testing policy violates their Fourth Amendment rights. The Fourth Amendment states that the people have the right to be secure in their houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable Searches and seizures, shall not be violated and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized (www.expage.com/page/drugsinsportsmain”). The students feel that using drugs are a choice and though illegal it should be kept to their privacy.
“www.expage.com/page/drugsinsportsmain” 8 Dec 1999 Buffnet. 8 Dec 1999