Guntersville City Schools to implement new form of random drug testing for middle and high school students in specific activities, privileges

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. -- Guntersville City Schools is implementing a new form of random drug testing for students participating in specific activities.

The Guntersville City Schools Board of Education approved new procedures and provisions for student drug testing at Guntersville Middle and High schools.

Earlier in the year a Guntersville High School football player passed away from an apparent drug overdose. "With that we have been told that students had been beating the drug testing procedures that we had in place," Superintendent Brett Stanton says, "After an exhaustive process of looking at all of our options, we decided to go with saliva or oral procedures and provisions for student drug testing to begin with."

In the past, the tests were different, but the group of eligible students at the middle and high school remains the same. "All of our athletes will be tested, and then any students who are involved in extracurricular activities will be included in the random selection pool for student drug testing," Stanton explains.

Students who have parking permits at the high school are also eligible for the random testing. If a student fails the first test, another different test will be given.

The tests are administered at the schools by  Marshall County Court Referral.

Parents must sign a waiver acknowledging the random drug testing when their student signs up for any extracurriculars, or a parking pass.

School officials hope the tighter measures resound with the students. "To send the message that drugs are nothing but a very slippery slope to a very difficult ending," Stanton says.

The school plans to start implementing the random tests after the Fall Break, which is next week.