ADVANCED SCREENING SOLUTIONS - DRUG
TESTING NEWSLETTER – 2008-04 – Dec 1, 2008
SAFETY – SECURITY – PEACE OF MIND
WHAT CAN WE ACCOMPLISH IN 2009?
THERE ARE FOUR PRIMARY GOALS OF THE STUDENT DRUG
• To deter and prevent drug use
• To reinforce all other prevention efforts
• To identify students who need help getting and staying drug-free
• To prepare students for workplace drug testing
QUOTE: “… for more than a decade, twelve- to seventeen-year-olds responding
to an open-ended question in the annual back-to-school survey … have named
drugs as the number one problem they face.”
Califano, Joseph A. Jr. High Society: How Substance Abuse Ravages America
and What to Do About It. New York: Public Affairs, 2007. 2
NOT SO FUN FACTS
A. Those using marijuana by their senior year were 8 times more likely to use it at
age 35 than those who had not tried it by the 12th grade.
B. Those using any illicit drug other than marijuana by their senior year were 5 times
more likely to use cocaine and 3 times more likely to misuse prescription drugs at
age 35 compared to students who had not used any illicit drug by their senior
C. Those who drank heavily were 3 times more likely to drink heavily at 35 years of
age compared to those who did not drink heavily as high school seniors.
Source: Alicia C. Merline, MA, et al., “Substance Use Among Adults 35 Years of
Age: Prevalence, Adulthood Predictors, and Impact of Adolescent Substance
Use,” January 2004, Vol 94, No. 1, American Journal of Public Health, 96-102.
D. quot;The foundation for later substance use is set for most people by the time they
finish high school. quot;Source: Alicia C. Merline, MA, “Substance use is still
common at age 35, U-M study finds,”
WHAT IS THE HISTORY OF DRUG TESTING?
Drug testing began in the U.S. as a prevention strategy during the Vietnam War. In
1982, the U.S. Navy began random drug testing all active duty personnel following a
tragic accident on the carrier Nimitz which was due to impairment from illegal drug use.
Shortly thereafter random drug testing was extended to all active duty military
Responding to concerns about public safety, the Federal Government expanded drug
testing to workers in safety-sensitive industries in the late 1980s. At that time drug
testing became standard for many private and government employers.
Building on these positive experiences in the workplace since 1995 an increasing
number of public and private schools have incorporated random drug testing into their
comprehensive drug prevention programs.
On May 10, 2001, President George W. Bush set a two-year goal of reducing drug use
in youth by 10 percent, and a five-year goal of reducing use by 25 percent.
In his January 2004 State of the Union Address, the President expressed strong support
for random student drug testing and increased spending on student drug testing
programs. Recent data show that the two-year and the five-year goals were met.
Random Student Drug Testing (RSDT) is part of that success story.
IS RANDOM STUDENT DRUG TESTING LEGAL?
In two landmark cases, the U.S. Supreme Court held that it is constitutional to perform
random drug testing on students participating in athletics and competitive extracurricular
Vernonia School District 47J v. Acton, 1995
Policy: To require all athletes to take a urinalysis drug test in order to participate in
Challenge: Unconstitutional - Violation of children's right to privacy.
Supreme Court Ruling: Student drug testing for athletes Held: CONSTITUTIONAL
Board of Education of Independent School District No. 92 of Pottawatomie
County, et al, Petitioners v. Lindsay Earls et al, 2002
Policy: To require all middle and high school students in Tecumseh, Oklahoma to
consent to urinalysis testing for drugs in order to take part in any extracurricular
Challenge: Unconstitutional under the Fourth Amendment prohibition of unreasonable
searches and seizures
Supreme Court Ruling: Held: CONSTITUTIONAL.
YET MORE REASONS CITED IN FAVOR OF
STUDENT DRUG TESTING
1. Testing gives students a chance to say quot;noquot; when approached to use drugs.
2. Random drug testing applies only to students who voluntarily choose to
participate in athletic and extracurricular activities. Student athletes and students
in extracurricular activities take leadership roles in the school community and, as
role models, should be drug free. Student drug testing helps ensure this. The
courts have permitted this because these are voluntary activities that the schools
can set conditions on.
3. It is critical to deter drug use during school years because kids on drugs can't
learn. If kids can't learn, how will they succeed in life? Random drug testing
deters student drug use as it deters drug use in the workplace.
4. Random student drug testing is important because children become addicted
more rapidly than adults and their recovery is less likely.
5. Students have a right to safe and drug-free learning environments. School
administrators need reasonable tools to stop drug users and drug dealers from
ruining school for everyone.
6. Testing gives parents an opportunity for intervention and treatment. Parents have
the right to send their kids to drug-free schools. The thought of sending their kids
to a school where drugs are rampant scares parents. Drug testing helps keep our
7. The intent of this program is not to punish students. The goal is for the drug user
to straighten his or her life out. The schools use drug testing as a tool to deter
drug use and help students to get drug education and/or counseling. The results
are not turned over to law enforcement.
8. Drug testing is a standard procedure that most people will experience at some
point in their lives either at their doctor's office or when applying for a job.
Certainly, athletes who want to compete at the collegiate or Olympic level should
get used to the idea of drug testing.
AN EFFECTIVE PREVENTION STRATEGY
Counter Peer Pressure
Young people today are constantly subject to peer pressure and are bombarded with
messages from friends, movies, music, television, and the Internet that drug use is okay
and even a rite of passage. To the relief of many teens, drug testing removes the tug of
peer pressure. By providing a non-negotiable, convenient way quot;out,quot; student drug
testing shifts the burden of deciding not to use drugs from the student to the adults in
Discourage Initiation of Drug Use
Research shows that the earlier a child starts using drugs, the more likely he or she will
be to develop a substance abuse problem. Conversely, if a child does not start using
drugs in the teen years, he or she is much less likely to initiate or develop a substance
abuse problem later in life, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Services Administration (SAMHSA). Student drug testing can impede drug use initiation
and can help identify drug users at an early stage before drug dependency or addiction
Promote a Safer Environment
Students who use drugs are statistically more likely than nonusers to drop out of school,
bring guns and knives to school, and be involved in physical attacks, property
destruction, stealing, and cutting classes (SAMHSA, 2004). Drug abuse not only
interferes with a student's ability to learn, it also disrupts the orderly environment
necessary for all students to succeed. Student drug testing can help reduce the
occurrence of these disruptive behaviors, which benefits everyone in the school and
Prevent Progressive Drug Use
No one starts using drugs with the intention of becoming addicted. But drug use can
quickly turn to dependence and addiction, trapping users in a vicious cycle that destroys
families and ruins lives and futures. Drug testing is a valuable tool for identifying drug-
dependent students so they can be referred to treatment and get the help they need
CAN IT WORK?
Reports from schools receiving Federal grants for drug testing programs give
encouraging indications that this strategy can be valuable in the effort to curb student
drug use. Its effectiveness as a deterrent has also been shown in other areas where
drug testing is performed, such as the U.S. Military and in the workplace. In the more
than 25 years since the Department of Defense began testing service members for
drugs, positive use rates have dropped from nearly 30 percent to less than 2 percent.
And according to the Division of Workplace Programs, drug-use positives in the U.S.
Workforce have plunged from 18 percent in 1987 to 4 percent in 2006.
REMEMBER THE REASON FOR THE SEASON
Advanced Screening Solutions wishes
you and yours a very Merry Christmas
and a healthy and prosperous
FOR MORE INFORMATION
On Professional and Affordable Student Drug Testing, please visit our website at
www.advancedscreeningsolutions.com or call us at (601)983-2776 or Toll Free at
(888)256-7268 for a FREE consultation
. ADVANCED SCREENING SOLUTIONS - DRUG TESTING NEWSLETTER – 2008-04 – DECEMBER 1, 2008