LINCOLN (KFSM) - A policy at a school in Lincoln requires all students who want to participate in activities outside of the classroom to be subject to drug testing.
Administrators at Lincoln High School have implemented a rule that all students who want to participate in activities out of the classroom are subject to a drug test.
The school defines “extracurricular activities” as events that take place outside of the classroom.
Those activities include sports, theater, band, and even field trips.
“That represents our school, our families, our community,” said Deon Birkes, Assistant Principal and Athletic Director at Lincoln High.
Birkes wrote the policy, saying he joined efforts with others in the district on researching the idea prior to implementing.
He says the policy requires parents to give consent to the school for the students to be screened randomly.
“They have the option not to [sign the consent form],” Birkes said.
Some parents say they like the policy.
“I think it is one of the greatest ideas they`ve installed in Lincoln itself,” said James Miller, a Lincoln parent. “If they can stop the drugs, or even part of the drugs, out of this school, it will be well worth it.”
One parent who declined to go on camera questions the legality of the testing, saying it violates a student`s privacy.
She told 5NEWS the policy “bullies parents, and students, into drug testing.”
Students are selected randomly by a drug-testing company, which tests for a wide range of drugs.
The company even tests to see if students are abusing prescription drugs.
Administrators say the school's lawyers have confirmed that this policy is legal.
The school says of 300 students tested in the past year, only one has come up positive.
Students who test positive are suspended from extracurricular activities for one month.
They are also required to receive counseling on drug usage. They are also screened for drug usage once a month following their test.
“It is worth every bit of the money we spend on it, if it keeps one kid off drugs,” Birkes said.