An unholy alliance?
Random Student Drug Testing Federal Grant Application Available
July 7, 2005
Contact: Alison Kogut
Washington, D.C. — The Office of National Drug Control Policy and the U.S. Department of Education today announced the availability of applications for federal grants for student drug testing programs in schools. This $10 million initiative provides competitive grants to support schools in the design and implementation of programs to randomly screen selected students and to intervene with assessment, referral, and intervention for students whose test results indicate they have used illicit drugs.
"Student drug testing is an effective, safe and powerful tool against the threat of drugs in our schools and communities," said John Walters, Director of National Drug Control Policy. "These important grants will go directly to help combat the serious public health threat of youth drug use and addiction. Student drug testing, like testing for tuberculosis in schools, saves our children's lives and their futures. Teen drug use is down 17 percent over the past three years, but we still have a long way to go, and student drug testing can be an effective tool for local communities."
"This grant will help prevent drug use among students by providing school districts with the funds needed to establish a student drug testing program, and thereby improve the climate for teaching and learning," said U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings. "Students engaged in sports or extracurricular activities are often pressured to take drugs. The student drug testing program will provide students with another reason to say no to drug use."
In June 2002, the U.S. Supreme Court broadened the authority of public schools to test students for illegal drugs. Voting 5 to 4 in Pottawatomie County v. Earls, the court ruled to allow random drug tests for all middle and high school students participating in competitive extracurricular activities. The ruling greatly expanded the scope of school drug testing, which previously had been allowed only for student athletes.
So, dear teenager, next time your friend tells you to f$%^ politics because it's all bulls#!@ anyway and doesn't make a difference in your life, ask 'em if they know that they can be randomly drug tested at any time, with no cause whatsoever. If they don't, smack them. If they do, smack them harder. Politics matter.