Drug of choice: Education


photo credit: Emily Koonce

Just say no \\ Pulling me out of class to take a drug test is not only ridiculous but a waste of my academic time. Random drug testing needs to stop.

writer: Jessica Blakeley, Sports Editor

Random testing is one time students don’t want out of class

Several controversies have arisen on the new drug testing policy over the past two years since its enforcement. I personally have an issue with how the school spends its money on drug testing. The school seems to waste more money on testing students actively involved in organizations who have nothing to hide. This is outrageous.

I was called out to do drug testing in one of my core classes. Not only was I humiliated in front of the whole class for having to stop the lesson to grab my bag and leave, but everyone in my class knew it was for drug testing. The class clowns yelled “don’t fail” as I walked through the door to join the other six accused “drug users” waiting in the hall.

The second I walked out, Mr. Knaggs took my phone.

This was my first drug test and I was furious. I had to stop everything and waste an hour and a half of my life to please the drug testing enforcers.”

— Jessica Blakeley, senior who does not do drugs

Prior to getting my phone taken, I had been talking to my mom who had been sick for days but I guess this waste-of-my-time drug testing was more important. When I finally texted her back and told her, she was mad that I had to go take a drug test.

This was my first drug test and I was furious. I had to stop everything and waste an hour and a half of my life to please the drug testing enforcers.

When we were walking to the field house someone next to me said it felt like we were all on the show “Beyond Scared Straight.” We had to stand in a line and march in unison like prisoners. The only thing missing was shackles around our ankles.

Once in the field house we had to leave all of our things behind us and had to stand against the wall in another line to sign paperwork and fill out our parent information, which took some people way too long to fill out.

One person actually didn’t know his own phone number . . . really?

While waiting in line I could tell who seemed guilty and who wasn’t. The ones who kept asking “What if” questions and the ones who were strangely giddy stuck out to me. I, on the other hand, had nothing to hide and that what made me so flustered with the whole event. I wasted almost an hour and a half of my morning. I had a deadline to meet for yearbook through all of this nonsense and I take that way more seriously than a “random” drug test.

The school says it’s random and it truly is to an extent, the students are picked at random but the day stays the same. The second Monday of every month students are pulled out of class. Keeping the day the same helps students who are on drugs know when and how to get out of the test. Out of those 25 people, maybe two raised suspicion. Students are given two hours to complete the test and if we are not able to give samples, we are found “positive” which does not make sense.

In a drug test, people are tested for several drugs. So if you don’t cooperate you are found positive for drugs. Assuming students are positive means nothing because there are so many drugs to be found positive for that they have no proof and have nothing to discipline the student for.

If a student is found positive there are minimal consequences, depending on the drugs found. You could get off with a suspension of a parking spot and a call to parents.

For more serious cases, the drug user could be sent to an alternative school.

Another issue I have with the drug testing is that I, along with hundreds of others, had to sign a consent form for every organization I was in as well as when I signed up for my parking spot. Also students have to consent to a drug test and a sobriety test if they want to participate in prom. One of many flaws in this design is the drug users are not involved in school activities. They also don’t purchase parking spots just so they can get out of drug testing, so what is the point? Those ‘abusers’ who do drive simply park across the street to get out of paying for a parking spot. This just creates another loophole to avoid being drug tested.

The school is wasting a mind blowing amount of money to “randomly” take students out of class to be drug tested.

The situation as a whole was truly aggravating and I’m upset I had to miss almost two whole classes. School is for learning and they pull students out in the middle of the day making them miss valuable lessons. When students miss class, they have to spend even more time making up work they missed. Right now I am truly livid at the school system for making me miss deadlines, lessons/labs and by also humiliating me in front of my peers and teachers.

Just like the police cannot search your car without suspicion, the school should not be able to drug test you unless they have likely suspicion.
Random drug testing is a waste of time, money and education. When students attend class, the school makes money. Stop taking children out of class, stop humiliating them.

I believe in following the law but it is also the law for students to attend classes. Do not take students away from the one thing they came to school for, an education.