Pubdate: Fri, 22 Jul 2005
Source: Minneapolis Star-Tribune (MN)
Copyright: 2005 Star Tribune
Author: Tom Angell


Rep. John Kline is wrong when he characterizes the law that strips 
financial aid from students with drug convictions as "an incentive for 
students to seek help" (Letters from readers, July 21).

While it is true that the law does allow some students to get their aid 
back if they take a qualified drug treatment program, many students find 
that private counseling is sometimes more expensive than college tuition 

Does Kline really think that all students caught with a marijuana cigarette 
should be kicked out of college until they undergo an expensive treatment 

Kline rightly wants to help students getting financial aid to make 
"responsible choices" and to make sure they don't waste their time and 
money on drugs. But federal financial aid already has an effective 
provision to make sure students are getting the most out of college.

It's called grades. If their GPA falls below a certain point, students lose 
access to financial aid anyway. It's not smart to deny college access as a 
means to reducing drug abuse.

The financial aid ban is not a deterrent to drug use; it's a deterrent to 
education and recovery. It should be repealed in its entirety.

Tom Angell, Washington, D.C.;

communications director,

Students for Sensible Drug Policy.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom