Mar 13, 2008

no random drug searches for Washington schools

I'm quite pleased that our state's Supreme Court stood up to the feds and upheld our own Constitution, which more strictly safeguards our right to privacy.
The decision involved athletes who sued the Wahkiakum School District in 1999 after the district began requiring students to undergo urine tests if they wanted to participate in sports. If the tests indicated drug or alcohol use, the student was suspended from sports but wasn't reported to police.

At the time, officials in the Southwest Washington school district felt there was a real problem with student drug use, including use among athletes. Public surveys named youth substance abuse as the No. 1 problem there. That's not enough to allow drug testing of a student when there's no reason to suspect he or she is using drugs, the court ruled unanimously.

"The justices concluded, as we had contended, that it violates the state Constitution to require a student to give their urine without any reason to believe they've done anything wrong," said Doug Honig, a spokesman for the ACLU of Washington, which represented the students and their parents.
Students don't deserve random drug testing, especially not the students who are least likely to abuse drugs. Every now and then, law and common sense collide. This is one of those rare times.


Ryan said...

You beat me to it. This is a great decision for kids and adults; it always seemed odd to me that little ol' Wahkiakum would be the genesis of all this, but then I recognized how close it is to Vernonia, OR, which was a famous drug testing case itself.

That said, the insult to the kids isn't worth the negligible benefits.

Dr Pezz said...

I don't agree with reducing individual student liberties, even when drugs are involved. Too often student rights are ignored or those in power ignore them. I'm proud of our courts as well.