Du Quoin students to be drug tested
By: Arnold Wyrick
DU QUOIN, IL --The Du Quoin school board approved random drug testing of their high school students over the summer break. Now the consent forms are in parent's hands to be signed to get the random drug testing program underway in Du Quoin.
"We hope it's a deterrent, we want to have a safe environment for our students. It's not just our athletes, it'll be those who are involved in any extracurricular activities. And also those students who have parking privileges at the high school," says Superintendent Gary Kelly.
But not all the students at Du Quoin High School are pleased with their new test.
"I don't think it's right, because I don't think they should be able to test you whenever. If you do it that's your own fault not anybody else," says Sophomore Jessica Coleman.
Should a parent choose not to sign the consent form for their child to be tested, there will be immediate action taken against the student.
"If they choose not to consent to the testing, then that student would be removed from those activities," Kelly said.
"I think that's a little extreme, because especially if it's your parents who have to sign it. I know my parents weren't happy about signing it. But since I'm in sports and activities they had to sign it," says Sophomore Zoe Gross.
Given the recent statistics on drug usage in schools, some parents in Du Quoin say something had to be done to stop the problem.
"It's probably something that is needed unfortunately in this day and age. I just think there's to many temptations out there. So I just think it's a good policy," says John Childs of Du Quoin.
Parents have until Friday to return their consent forms to the school district. Then the random drug testing will begin shortly thereafter.
The Du Quoin State Bank, and sales from roosters at sporting events throughout the school year will help cover the cost of the tests.
"Students will be taken to Marshall Browning Hospital here in Du Quoin to submit their urine sample for testing. And we will protect their identity during the tests. But if a student would test positive 3 times, they would lose all extracurricular and athletics for the rest of their high school career," Kelly said.