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This usually involves collecting urine samples to test for drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, phencyclidine PCPand opioids both heroin and prescription pain relievers.
In random testing, students are selected regardless of their drug use history and may include students required to do a drug test as a condition of participation in an extracurricular activity.
Schools adopt random student drug testing to decrease drug misuse and illicit drug use among students.
First, they hope random testing will serve as a deterrent and give students a reason to resist peer pressure to take drugs. Secondly, drug testing can identify teens who have started using illicit drugs and would benefit from early intervention, as well as identify those who already have drug problems and need referral to treatment.
Using illicit drugs not only interferes with a student's ability to learn, but it can also disrupt the teaching environment, affecting other students as well.
Is random drug testing of students legal? In Junethe U. Supreme Court broadened the authority of public schools to test students for illegal drugs. The court ruled to allow random drug tests for all middle and high school students participating in competitive extracurricular activities.
The ruling greatly expanded the scope of school drug testing, which previously had been allowed only for student athletes. Just because the U. Supreme Court said student drug testing for adolescents in competitive extracurricular activities is constitutional, does that mean it is legal in my city or state?
A school or school district that is interested in adopting a student drug-testing program should seek legal expertise so that it complies with all federal, state, and local laws.
Individual state constitutions may dictate different legal thresholds for allowing student drug testing. Communities interested in starting student drug testing programs should become familiar with the law in their respective states to ensure proper compliance.
If a student tests positive for drugs, should that student face disciplinary consequences? The primary purpose of drug testing is not to punish students who use illicit drugs but to prevent future illicit drug use and to help students already using become drug-free.
If a student tests positive for drugs, schools can respond to the individual situation. If a student tests positive for drug use but has not yet progressed to addiction, the school can require counseling and follow-up testing. For students diagnosed with addiction, parents and a school administrator can refer them to effective drug treatment programs to begin the recovery process.
Why test teenagers at all?
Teens' brains and bodies are still developing, and this makes them especially vulnerable to the harmful effects of drug use. Most teens do not use illicit drugs, but for those who do, it can lead to a wide range of adverse effects on their behavior and health.
Even a single use of an intoxicating drug can affect a person's judgment and decision-making, resulting in accidents, poor performance in school or sports activities, unplanned risky behavior, and overdose.
Repeated drug use can lead to serious problems, such as poor academic outcomes, mood changes depending on the drug: Repeated drug use can also lead to addiction. Studies show that the earlier a teen begins using drugs, the more likely he or she will develop a substance use disorder SUD.
An SUD develops when continued drug use causes issues, such as health problems and failure to meet responsibilities at home, work, or school.
An SUD can range from mild to severe, the most severe form being addiction. Conversely, if teens stay away from drugs while in high school, they are less likely to develop an SUD later in life.
For more information about health effects, see our Commonly Abused Drugs Charts. How many students actually use drugs? Findings from the Monitoring the Future MTF survey of 8th, 10th, and 12th graders showed that past-year use of illicit drugs other than marijuana is down from recent peaks in all three grades.
Twenty-one percent of 12th graders say that they've used any illicit drug other than marijuana at least once in their lifetime, and about 36 percent reported using marijuana in the last year.
What testing methods are available? There are several testing methods currently available that use urine, hair, oral fluids, and sweat. These methods vary in cost, reliability, drugs detected, and detection period.
Schools can determine their needs and choose the method that best suits their requirements, as long as the testing kits are from a reliable source.BU and Wheelock College join to become the Wheelock College of Education & Human Development..
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