Expanded drug tests considered

Published 8:00 pm Thursday, April 11, 2013


   Brookhaven School Board members have heard a recommendation to expand and revise the scope of random drug testing throughout the district.

     Athletic Director Tommy Clopton presented school board members on Wednesday with a proposed policy that would see all students participating in activities subject to random drug tests.

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     His proposal is revision of the district’s current drug policy, which is limited to student athletes.

     School trustees could vote to approve the new policy at their board meeting next month in May.

     They didn’t discuss the policy much after Clopton’s presentation.

     A pool of activity students could be chosen from a list of all activity students for testing by an independent laboratory, Clopton said.

     The number of students to be randomly tested could be chosen by the district, while the random selection of names would be done by the testing laboratory.

     The proposed policy defines an “activity student” as a student participating in a sponsored extracurricular activity at Brookhaven High School.

     The policy says these could include athletics, academic teams, band, choir and cheer.

     Students could be selected for random testing whether their activity was in or out of season.

     As with the prior policy that could see itself replaced, the proposed policy allows the school to require an athlete to submit to a drug test if reasonable suspicion of steroid use exists.

     Sanctions, varying according to the activity, are listed that students could be subject to following positive drug tests.

     In drafting the revised policy, Clopton said he spoke to a number of school districts throughout the state to get a sense of what’s being done.

     He described the expanded testing policy as an attempt to help combat drug use by high school students.