Favorite

Drug test policies in state's 10 largest school districts 

click to enlarge thebigpicture1-1.jpg

Many Arkansas districts randomly drug test middle and high school students who participate in sports or other extracurricular activities. The reasoning behind these tests, according to school handbooks, is twofold — mixing drugs and physical activity endangers the health of students, and students who wear school jerseys are ambassadors, representing the school rather than themselves. A positive test typically means suspension from athletics or other extracurricular activities.

In 2002, UALR journalism professor Bruce Plopper and three other families sued the Conway School District for drug testing or threatening to test their middle school students. According to Plopper, both the U.S. and Arkansas Constitutions have clauses that protect against this testing. Before the case made it to court, Conway suspended its testing program, and in 2007 the district officially dropped the policy. "This was an unwarranted invasion of privacy," Plopper said. "They were testing students who hadn't done anything wrong, students with high grades."

According to Rita Sklar, executive director of ACLU of Arkansas, public school students are one of the most susceptible demographics to institutionalized bullying. "What student doesn't play sports or do something extracurricular? Students shouldn't have to submit bodily fluids just because they go to a public school," she said. In a multiyear, national study, the University of Michigan found nearly identical levels of drug use in schools that test and schools that don't.

Favorite

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • The Inquizator: Brad Cushman

    Brad Cushman has been gallery director and curator at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock since 2000. He is also a studio artist and a previous Grand Award winner in the Arkansas Arts Center's "Delta Exhibition."
    • Jan 8, 2015
  • Arkansas fiction: the survey

    We asked local literary figures for Arkansas novels they wish were better known. Here are a few of the results.
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • The Little Rock Top 10

    Here are the Little Rock albums we listened to more than any others this year, the ones that meant the most to us and that we'd push on any out-of-towners who asked what was new in the Little Rock music scene.
    • Dec 18, 2014

Most Shared

  • Tackling autism, child by child

    An Arkansas Children's Hospital doctor is testing a new drug that targets one of a host of ailments the highly individual disorder can cause.
  • Tom Cotton flat on his big night

    Sen. Tom Cotton's big Republican National Convention speech was nothing to write home about.
  • 1957 all over again

    Last week, the State Board of Education voted to ignore federal courts and allow school district transfers that will encourage segregation.
  • Death penalty lives

    Barely clinging to its flagging life, the death penalty got a merciful reprieve last month from the unlikeliest quarter, the Arkansas Supreme Court.
  • Drinking culture

    Here we go again. At the rate these campus sexual abuse sagas are making news, it's reasonable to ask what college administrators can possibly be thinking about.

Latest in The Big Picture

Event Calendar

« »

July

S M T W T F S
  1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31  

Most Viewed

  • Tackling autism, child by child

    An Arkansas Children's Hospital doctor is testing a new drug that targets one of a host of ailments the highly individual disorder can cause.
  • Mosaic Church celebrates its 15th anniversary

    It's an anchor for 72204
  • Aiding segregation

    Also us vs. them, Asa on relitigating Lewinsky days and more.
  • No counsel

  • The fall

    When The Observer was a lad, our swimming spot of choice was the Round Hole, a geographical oddity where the Saline River made a hard turn to the left. The result was a vast eddy that had cut an almost perfectly round pool, the bottom scoured straight down to bedrock.

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation