Thursday, July 13, 2006
Drug Testing In High Schools: It Works!
Yeah, so does locking up kids in their room after you pick them up from school. Doesn't mean it's a good idea. USA Today talks about the growing trend of random drug testing for kids in high school (Pushed aggressively by Bush) -- you know, testing trouble-makers who want to play a sport, go to a dance or drive their car to school. Treating kids like criminals for no good reason is stupid on so many levels. The dumbest proponent is this New Jersey principal who says the first year they did testing she sampled 10% of the students...and found one drug user. The next year she did 25% of the kids and found none. Success! Uh, shouldn't finding ONE kid show the waste and stupidty of testing one out of every four students and teaching them Big Brother thinks they're guilty before innocent? Plus, the ONE thing schools might want to look for are athletes pressured into using steroids and other drugs that can hurt and kill them -- we all know the pressure to succeed at the high school level for a kid wanting to go to college or just not let down his family and friends. But almost none of the schools actually test athletes for steroids because that increases the cost of the test. They test for cocaine and marijuana -- and as many studies have shown, kids taking part in athletics are less likely to do those drugs. Stupid all around. Common sense dictates they'd be far better off focusing on students who showed warning signs -- driving erratically, dramatic changes in grades or behavior, athletes who suddenly gain 15 pounds in muscle and have acne all over their back, and so on -- rather than treating all kids like criminals.