Rock Hill Schools drop proposal to randomly drug test students

Rock Hill Schools drop proposal to randomly drug test students
(Kristi O'Connor | WBTV)

A proposal to randomly drug test student athletes and student drivers in Rock Hill has been dropped.

Rock Hill School Board Chairman Jim Vining says the proposal was dismissed for several reasons, including budget concerns. The board also didn't feel they should hold students to a higher standard than staff.

A group of athletic directors in Rock Hill proposed the idea to the board in January 2017.

The goal of the initial idea was not to punish students but to deter them from using drugs or to get them help if they were using.

School officials still have the authority to issue a drug test to a student if they suspect the student is under the influence.

The Clover School district has had a random drug testing policy in place since 2010. According to Athletic Director Bailey Jackson, the program has been successful.

Clover's policy includes a planned drug test for all student-athletes at the beginning of their season. Then, sometime throughout the season, about 40 students are selected at random to be tested.

Jackson says the first time a student tests positive the superintendent and parents are notified. The second time a student tests positive the athletic director is also notified, and the student-athlete is automatically ineligible for five days. To regain eligibility the student must go through counseling and random testing.

Rock Hill parents and high school students submitted their feedback on the idea when it was first proposed. The policy would have gone into effect in fall of this year.

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