Learn about what other schools have done to successfully reduce drug use. Read what educators and administrators at schools with student random drug-testing programs have to say about decreasing and deterring drug use in their schools in this report from the Coalition: Student random drug-testing prevention programs: Do these programs work?
Policy and overview of the first student random testing programme in the U.K.
SCOTT COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT, Tennessee, March 2005
4-Year Old Drug Testing Program Cuts Student Drug Use
Scott County School District of Huntsville, TN added a random student drug-testing program in 2001 to its existing prevention programs. The program is called Schools Together Allowing No Drugs (STAND). Scott County and Oneida City Schools were the first districts in the state of Tennessee to implement drug-testing programs for students.
According to Judge Jamie Cotton, the founder of the program, there has been a “steep decline in the number of recidivism, the repeat offenders, and in the number of positive tests overall." The program has improved students' behavior and decreased the drug problem. So much so, that Judge Cotton says many other counties in East Tennessee and other states are interested in the program
According to Scott High School principal Sharon Wilson, "We think it's very effective.” Students at the high school are randomly tested if they have privileges, such as playing sports or parking in the school parking lot.
As with most other student drug-testing programs (SDT) that follow accepted and recommended standard practices, Scott County’s program is not intended to embarrass or stigmatize students. It is meant to be an early intervention program to help students get into counseling and/or treatment - students are not punished. According to Principal Wilson, "The reaction that we have found has been one of support and enthusiasm, especially by the parents”, even though initially some students and parents were hesitant.
According to Sarah Byrd, a 2005 graduate of Scott High School, the students in her class have been randomly tested for drugs since starting high school. "I really like it because they test each and every student that signs the papers, and it lets people know who is on drugs and who is not. It makes me feel better when I know who is safe and who is not," said Sarah Byrd.
For more information about the STAND program, call the director, Trent Coffey, at (423) 286-9925.
From a news item produced by WBIR-TV News, Knoxville, TN and a print article by Herryn Riendeau, Reporter, at 3/29/05 titled: Scott County’s School Drug Testing Program Cuts Student Drug Use