School adopts revamped, stricter student drug testing policy

(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

MANILA, AR (KAIT) - All Manila students involved in extracurricular activities will now be drug tested twice a year.

After several students tested positive for drugs, the administration and school board revamped the chemical testing policy.

"We've had a chemical screening in place here for many years," said Manila High School Principal Mark Manchester.

He says they do not want to punish the students, but keep them on the right track.

"The board has adopted a policy where every student that is in extracurricular will be tested one time each semester and we will continue to have our monthly random screenings," Manchester said.

Around 400 students will be drug tested twice yearly, Manchester said that's the majority of the student body.

The district works with a chemical screening company to do testing and Manchester said adopting the new policy is costly.

"The hope is if we save one kid, then we've spent our money very well," he said. "You can't put a price on that, no matter what it costs."

If a student tests positive on their first screening, they'll be suspended from extracurricular activities for 180 days.

However, Manchester said if students agree to monthly testing for the remainder of the year after testing positive, they will only be suspended for 30 days.

Manchester said extracurricular activities include a broad spectrum of things, including sports, prom, choir, band, school plays, and even driving to school.

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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