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‘Voluntary’ Drug Testing Comes to New Jersey School District

Drug Testing 101: How To Pass A Drug Test in 2019

From New Jersey comes the unwelcome news that the Lacey Township Board of Education has voted to approve a program of “voluntary” random drug testing for middle school students.

“I’m a supporter for any intervention to give another reason for kids to say ‘no’ and that can start at any age, especially with our young teens,” district superintendent Craig Wigley told NJ Advance Media after the Aug. 15 vote. Seventh and eighth graders who participate in athletic programs or extracurricular programs will be given the “option” to participate in the testing program, with parental consent.

For a first violation, a student would be barred from sports or extracurricular activities for 10 days. With a second violation, it goes up to 45-days, with mandatory attendance of eight counseling sessions. A third strike, of course, means you’re out—barred from sports and extracurricular programs permanently. The district already has a similar program in place for high school students.

Local news media have been pretty gushy.

“It’s really another tool for schools and families to keep their kids safe. I think it’s a wonderful addition and it’s good to be in the forefront of that,” Wigley said. “We’re being proactive.”

No civil liberties groups were asked for a quote, it seems.

An editorial on myCentralJersey notes that the Partnership for Drug Free New Jersey supports the policy. But it does add: “Not all organizations fighting substance abuse support school drug testing programs.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics opposes drug testing in schools, saying such programs lack “solid evidence for their effectiveness.” The organization also raised concerns about privacy—and the potential for false positives when prescribed medications are flagged as illegal drugs.  

The editorial closes with the equivocation that decisions on such programs “should rest with local communities… But anything that can help prevent the scourge of substance abuse deserves serious consideration.”

NJ Advance Media reader commentary page on the question brought back mixed responses. One Hunter Hamilton wrote: “Heroin [is an] epidemic in Lacey… [S]ome parents need all the help they can get.”

But a RA001 replied: “I would rather you test my kid academically and leave the drug and alcohol testing to me. Focus on the task at hand—education not parenting.”

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Jack Baker

    August 19, 2016 at 12:35 pm

    The School District may want to look at the reliability of the testing methods used. “Cost effective” tests can be seriously inaccurate. One test type will test positive if exposed to too much air. This kit is presently used by LEO’s to justify arresting citizens. And then, as reported in multiple news sources, the DA’s use the available test result and stacked charges to get a plea bargain. Will the accused children be taken to medical facilities for conformation blood tests. If not, then plan on falsely accusing numerous children of consuming drugs. Ruin their lives, but be aware of what you are doing. Google is your best friend.

  2. Avatar

    Joe A

    August 19, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    How legal can this be? And “voluntary”? I can already see how this will work. They will threaten a kid and say if they don’t “voluntary” give a sample or x,y,or z will happen. And nobody should be doing anything to a kid without a parent present and giving consent. Children are not adults and don’t think like adults. How can any of this be good? I think the schools focus should be on teaching and let the parents of said kids worry about if their kid is on drugs or not. In my opinion this is some serious overstepping. And Jack Baker makes a good point. There are false positives. Are they going to expel children and ruin lives before they even start?

  3. Avatar

    Tom R

    August 20, 2016 at 10:25 am

    If I lived in that toxic state I wouldn’t drink the water. There’s a reason those people act so stupid when it comes to governance up there. An ignorant and apathetic population + massive corruption, is all they require in the cemetery state.

  4. Avatar

    Tom R

    August 20, 2016 at 10:29 am

    Why don’t you want to take the test Timmy if your so innocent of suspicion. Twisted liberal logic. liberals own education. This belongs to them !

    • Avatar

      slimj091

      August 21, 2016 at 5:36 pm

      Oh just knock it the hell off. Prohibitionists come from all political ideologies.

  5. Avatar

    Sandy Beachman

    August 22, 2016 at 9:22 am

    I think the parents and teachers should be tested first, with the teachers jobs on the line like the athletics are. After all, “Lead By Example”.

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