Three Catholic High Schools will do random drug testing - Tucson News Now

Three Catholic High Schools will do random drug testing

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St. Ed's played Hawken in a Lacrosse Match today, and George Smith went to find out what students and parents thought about the new drug testing. St. Ed's played Hawken in a Lacrosse Match today, and George Smith went to find out what students and parents thought about the new drug testing.
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -

Three local Catholic schools are going to start mandatory drug testing for all students beginning in the fall.

The schools say the new policy is designed to keep students safe. At St. Edward High School in Lakewood, the word is already spreading.

"I think it's a good policy doing all students," said Frank Geib, a Junior at St. Edward's. 

 More than 900 students, not just athletes, will be tested for drugs beginning in the fall.

 The school will use a non-invasive hair sampling procedure.

After an initial test at the beginning of the year, there will be periodic random testing throughout the school year. School officials say testing is a deterrent

"Empowering students who inevitably in high school face peer pressure to have an out to say no.  If someone offers them something, to be able to say 'hey, I'm cool but, you know, I'm going to be tested at school," said KC McKenna, VP of Marketing and Admissions at St. Edward's. 

Officials also say, students who need help will be identified and counseled.

 St. Ed's, St. Ignatius and Gilmour Academy announced the joint initiative to try to prevent substance abuse.

"I'm not opposed to it. I think it's a good idea. Keeps the kids safe. A lot of good things will come from it," said Frank Geib, a senior. 

"If it's executed correctly, I think there's nothing wrong with protecting the kids from, keeping them away from things that can harm them," said parent Anne Battistoni.

Ultimately, this is not designed to be a punitive program; it's designed as a proactive prevention and intervention strategy.

By identifying students at risk, the schools can work with students and their parents and health professionals to get them the help they need and re-direct their path.

If a student tests positive, the schools are committed to working with the student and his/her parents to identify resources to address the issue.

Counselors at each of the three schools have identified community resources to make sure students who have substance abuse issues can get the help they need. 
They have retained the services of Psychemedics Corporation of Boston to conduct periodic drug assessment of students (grades 9-12), using a non-invasive hair sampling procedure.

Psychemedics Corporation is headquartered in Boston and has offices in Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles and Las Vegas. It is the world's largest provider of hair testing for the detection of drugs and has been conducting drug testing since 1987.

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