Chris Redmon, the principal at Cassville High School in Missouri, wants to change the way the school performs drug tests. He has presented a new drug testing policy to the school board in hopes to keep up with the latest drug trends. The most abused drugs of teenagers is now prescription medicine, which the schools current drug tests are unable to detect.
Currently the school district drug testing policy is to conduct 15 to 20 tests annually. One teacher, five middle school students and 15 high school students are randomly selected to take a drug test. Redmon is proposing to increase the number of tests to 16 to 20 a year.
The school presently uses a four panel drug test, which includes testing for cocaine, marijuana, opiates, amphetamine and methamphetamine. Redmon would like the school to start using a 12 panel drug test which is capable of detecting phyncyclidine (PCP), benzodizepines (Valium/Xanax), barbiturates, oxycodone, methadone, propoxphene and also all the substances the four panel test can detect.
Redmon has also proposed to educate the students with a guest speaker and to have additional screening for synthetic drugs.
Although he admits the additional screening is pricey he feels that it could help save a students life, due to the increasing harmful effects synthetic drugs produce.
Currently the schools spends $5, 460 a year. This new proposed will cost 11,310 creating a increased price of $5,850.
Currently 85 percent of the Cassville High School students participate in the drug testing program. Any student who is active in extracurricular activities are required to take part, plus there are also students whose parents volunteered them into the program.
A first offense results in suspension from part of contests or activities the student is involved in. They can reduce the time of suspension by seeking five hours of drug and alcohol abuse counseling. A second offense will produce a one year suspension from all competitive competitions. The student will be able to reduce this time by seeking a minimum of 15 hours of drug abuse counseling.
If a third positive drug tests occurs the student will be permanently suspended from all competitive activities for the reminder of their high school career.
The school board is currently reviewing this proposed drug testing policy.