Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jul 2002
Source: Decatur Daily (AL)
Copyright: 2002 The Decatur Daily
Author:  Deangelo McDaniel
Bookmark: (Drug Testing)


HARTSELLE -- The Hartselle City School system could start drug-testing 
students who participate in extracurricular activities as soon as the next 
school term.

The committee the school board appointed to develop a policy voted 
unanimously Monday night to recommend that Hartselle have a drug-testing 

The group did not decide who would be tested or if the policy would 
recommend testing students that the school system does not suspect of drug use.

School Board Chairman Susan Puckett, who serves also on the committee, said 
the board could implement the policy after school started in August.

Supreme Court vote allows testing

The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, cleared the way for school 
systems to test students who participate in extracurricular activities.

Justice Clarence Thomas wrote the opinion for himself, Chief Justice 
William H. Rehnquist and Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony M. Kennedy and 
Stephen Breyer.

"We find that testing students who participate in extracurricular 
activities is a reasonably effective means of addressing the school 
district's legitimate concerns in preventing, deterring and detecting drug 
use," Thomas wrote.

Hartselle student Amanda Munger serves on the committee. She said students 
she talked with are worried about the drug-testing policy.

Committee member Greg Dobbs said the vote is a move in the right direction. 
He made the motion to send the recommendation to the school board, but it 
took him almost 30 minutes to get committee Chairman Susan Hayes to call 
for a vote.

The committee voted by secret ballot.
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