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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Roane County (TN) School District is drug testing student athletes in violation of state law.

Alert - American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee: "The American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee (ACLU-TN)
today sent a letter to the Roane County school district demanding a stop to the random drug testing of student athletes which is in clear violation of state law. In addition to being illegal, random drug testing of students is proven to be ineffective in deterring drug use and is opposed by leading experts in adolescent health, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the National Education Association, the Association of Addiction Professionals and the National Association of Social Workers.

“Random drug testing is not only patently illegal under state law, but demonstrably ineffective and frequently counterproductive,” said Hedy Weinberg, Executive Director of the ACLU of Tennessee. “These unsubstantiated searches make a mockery of the civics lessons taught in our classrooms, and should be roundly and readily rejected by parents and school officials alike.”"
Not only is this behavior illegal, random drug testing has been proven to be ineffective as a deterrent. It simply does not prevent students from using drugs. In fact, when children are tested for a safe and non-toxic substance like marijuana, students then have an incentive to instead use deadly drugs like inhalants. I believe the only effective and ethical way of preventing adolescent drug abuse, without violating individual rights is to foster a healthy relationship between the parent and child. School policy and the drug war instead foster mistrust, a snitch culture, and pit children against parents by creating adversarial relationships.

For more information read my post on fooling urine drug tests.

Read the full alert from the American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee.
Associated Press article here: ACLU Demands Tennessee School Stop Drug Testing Student Athletes.