Random Drug Testing Approved for High School
Voluntary program to begin in the fall.
A policy allowing voluntary random drug testing at the high school was unanimously agreed upon by members of the Jefferson Township Board of Education at its meeting on Monday. The program will begin in the 2012-13 school year.
Under the policy, parents will be able to sign their students up for the program at no cost. A minimum of 2.5 percent of those students who sign up for the program will be tested each month, according to Joseph Kraemer, superintendent of Jefferson Township schools.
Kraemer also discussed the policy involving disciplinary actions for substance abuse offenders that was up for first reading at Monday night's meeting.
A first offense is punishable by 30 days suspension from any sports or co-curricular activities. A second offense gets a student 45 days suspension from sports or co-curricular activities and mandatory addition to the random drug testing pool if the student wasn’t on the list already. A third offense garners students a 60-day suspension from sports or co-curricular activities.
“We have tried to make the policy more rehabilitative rather than punitive,” Kraemer said. “If someone has been caught using and we take away everything that’s good about school for that kid, it takes away all the motivation to stay away from drugs or alcohol. If we give kids the right to earn back their spot on a team or in an activity, that might be what they need to resist doing it again.”