Delaware Valley schools, ACLU Debate Drug Testing in Court

Delaware Skyline

A Delaware family had a 12-year-old daughter who wanted to join the school scrapbooking club. This family was very surprised when they looked at the consent form the child brought home. To be in the club she had to agree to undergo drug testing and submit to more drug testing in the future.

The family felt that requiring a drug test to participate in a school club was a violation of their civil rights. They met school representatives in court for a hearing on a preliminary injunction. The American Civil Liberties Union was on hand to ask that the policy is suspended until it is tested in court.

The policy requires students who participate in school activities or park their cars on campus to submit to a mandatory initial drug and alcohol test. Then they must agree to random testing in the future.

Some students avoid testing by parking their cars just off campus. Some student tried to transfer to other schools so they could play sports without testing but transfers have not been allowed.

The policy has already been challenged in 2003 in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court case of Theodore vs. Delaware Valley School District. The court required schools to justify drug testing programs by showing additional evidence that the group of students undergoing testing had a high rate of drug use. Otherwise, the school wasn’t allowed to conduct testing on a limited portion of the student population.

Drug abuse in Delaware has always been a problem. It is unlikely that the enforcement or repeal of this school policy will have much impact in the long run.

What can make a difference is for parents to really take time to educate their kids on the effects and consequences of drug abuse. This education should start in elementary school as by the time a child gets to middle school, he or she has usually seen others drinking or using drugs and has probably been offered drugs or alcohol. Drug rehabs in Delaware are filled with people who started abusing drugs while still in school.

If you know someone who needs help with drug abuse, call Narconon Riverbend now. Our intake specialists are standing by to answer your call.