Pubdate: Thu, 03 Oct 2002
Source: Decatur Daily (AL)
Copyright: 2002 The Decatur Daily
Author: Bayne Hughes


Committee To Make Suggestion For Morgan High School Students

A committee will recommend the Morgan County Board of Education test high 
school students who participate in all extracurricular activities for drugs.

The committee reached a consensus on that Wednesday afternoon.

School system Director of Counseling and Health Clara Swader estimated 
testing grades nine through 12 would involve about 1,000 students. Testing 
of students seven through 12 would involve about 2,000.

The committee could not, however, settle much more on a drug-testing 
program during the meeting.

More Information Needed

Superintendent Don Murphy wanted the group to decide if the school system 
would follow Hartselle and Decatur and test for tobacco.

But several committee members said they did not know enough about the 
accuracy of testing for tobacco to make a decision.

Murphy said he wants each student involved tested once to start the 
program, followed by random tests.

But the committee members pointed out two problems:

a.. Some sports like basketball, golf and baseball do not pick their teams 
at the start of school. a.. There's no set time that students join many 
noncompetitive extracurricular activities. Test three times?

Murphy suggested the school system test three times, coinciding with the 
start of school and the start of winter and spring sports seasons.

Murphy also wanted to the committee to consider the penalty phase of the 
testing program, which led to considerable disagreement over the extent the 
penalties should reach.

The committee was unable to reach a consensus before several members had to 
leave because of previous commitments.

Murphy asked the committee to study drug-testing policies of Decatur, 
Vestavia Hills and Arab school systems before its next meeting later this month.
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