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Drug Testing News
Ounce of prevention
BY JESSICA LIVINGSTON
POTTSBORO -- The School Board here took its first step towards
a drug prevention program on Monday, an idea that has been
held at bay for both cost and effectiveness reasons. Board
members did this by approving the Shattered Dreams program.
The alcohol awareness program, established in 1998, is a
three-day event where students go through the motions of a
drunk driving accident. A mock-up of a crash scene on the
school lawn or parking lot launches the program. Students
gather to witness police procedures and investigation,
emergency medical service response and treatment, and victims
leaving the scene in a hearse. The re-enactment continues with
the notification of the deceased's families and their
reactions. The arrest, booking and trial of the drunk driver
are then staged for students first-hand viewing.
Additionally, the Shattered Dreams program includes grim
reapers pronouncing one student dead every 15 minutes
throughout the school day. Each student symbolizes a life that
is lost in the United States each year as a result of drunk
Superintendent Kyle Collier said the program first struck him
as a scare tactic, but after further thought, he said he felt
it was more of a personalized impact model for students.
Collier said Shattered Dreams would be of no cost to the
A four-month discussion on the implementation of a student
drug testing policy had no action at Monday's meeting.
It was described as a "personal crossroad" by Collier. He
said, "I found myself vacillating between where I felt like
the most benefit to our students would be in terms of spending
money to help our kids."
The average cost of urinalysis is $23 per student. Collier
said if approximately 50 percent of about 768 kids in the
grades 7-12 student body participated in extracurricular
activities, then 380 students would be eligible for testing.
If 10 percent of those students were tested during each random
drug test, then the district would pay $874.
Drug tests would be conducted multiple times each year.
Collier, as well as many board members, were debating whether
to spend the money on student drug testing or drug awareness
The board members collectively said they felt drug education
and awareness would be more effective than drug testing since
it would target the student body as a whole opposed to a
"Are we here to just protect kids in extracurricular
programs," said Collier, "or are we here to protect every
The Board is seeking more information, as well as comparing
area school drug testing policies and results, before making a