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Drug testing suggested for School Board members
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With random drug tests targeting students in extracurricular activities in Warren County schools, at least one School Board member believes leaders should lead by example.“I think if we are asking the students to submit to random drug tests, then the School Board should do the same,” said School Board member Bill Zechman concerning plans to require the random tests for any student who participates in extracurricular activities from the chess team to the football team.The drug tests have been the point of legal challenges and disdain for some students, especially given the school system’s budget concerns and the fact such a testing program could have a nearly $30,000 price tag around $18 to $25 per test. The Student Advisory Committee questioned the move during the recent School Board meeting, wondering if given the budget woes random drug testing is worth it.Given the fact county government has taken over the operation of the school’s financial department, a move that was much to the chagrin of the school system, one School Board member suggested maybe county commissioners would like to get bids for urine collection cups, perhaps saving the county money.As for the drug tests themselves, those being tested would be randomly selected by computer, which could end in the same student being tested back to back.“That would just be bad luck,” Director of Schools Dr. Jerry Hale said, noting a student could also be tested for cause if there is suspicion the student is using drugs. Parents would be required to sign a waiver allowing their child to participate in school extracurricular activities in order for them to be part of random drug testing.As for Zechman’s suggestion School Board members should be tested, he said he plans to take the idea up with the board prior to the student policy being implemented next school year.