Athletes, dancers, cheerleaders and student body officers (but no one else) at the eight high schools in the Davis School District will be forced to undergo random drug testing if a little-known proposal sails through at tonight's board meeting. To my knowledge, no effort has been made to inform parents of this change. To take a final vote on this matter without thorough efforts to solicit public input is unacceptable.
I am certainly opposed to illegal drug use (especially by teens) and I realize it happens, even in our relatively safe community. However, I have a problem with imposing this questionable process on thousands of students — whose only reason for being tested is that they have the initiative to participate in a wholesome extracurricular activity. Singling out students who must already abide by academic and citizenship standards as a condition of their extracurricular activities strikes me as wasteful (estimated cost of $25,000 per year) and a violation of the tenet that all are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
As an involved parent, I see it as my responsibility — not the school district's — to talk to, observe, deter and monitor my children when it comes to drug use. I strongly urge the Board to hit the pause button and ensure a thorough public debate takes place.