By Staff Writer
School districts in East Texas have begun drug testing their students, in the hopes of fighting back against the growing drug abuse problem amongst teens. According to the Tyler Morning Telegraph, so far, four school districts have begun testing students in the 7th through 12th grades who are involved in extra-curricular activities.
One district, Henderson ISD, is participating after having 17 students put in programs for drug-related offenses in the 2010-2011 school year. These students were detected through the use of a police canine who had been on the middle and high school campuses since the spring of 2010.
Along with students who participate in extra-curriculars, high school students who wish to obtain a parking permit will also be tested. If a test is positive, a warning is issued to the student and they are referred to drug addiction counseling. They would also be subjected to a re-test every month for the rest of the year.
Texas is one of three states that has drug testing funded by high school athletic associations .The others are Illinois and New Jersey.
Drug testing in schools has drawn criticism from groups such as the ACLU, who believing random, suspicion-less testing is a violation of students rights.