Bushland ISD has made the bold move to apply drug testing to grades 7-12 for all students who want to take part in extracurricular activities when classes start next month. Whether it be drama, chess, sports, band and other activities Bushland students will be required to sign a consent form and pass a comprehensive drug test.

In a press release, Bushland ISD Superintendent Chris Wigington stated although there is not a drug problem within its 1400 student population, the ISD had been discussing the drug testing policy for months and chose to be proactive to keep a drug free environment.

In June 2002, the U.S. Supreme Court broadened the authority of public schools to test students for illegal drugs. The court ruled to allow random drug tests for all middle and high school students participating in competitive extracurricular activities. The ruling greatly expanded the scope of school drug testing, which previously had been allowed only for student-athletes.

Will Bushland students who test positively for drugs or other substances face suspension, expulsion or criminal charges? Possibly. However, students who possess illegal drugs, alcohol or other substances will be held to Bushland ISD student code as well as city and state laws.

The National Drug Helpline offers 24/7 drug and alcohol help to those struggling with addiction. Call the hotline to receive information regarding local help in the Panhandle at 1-844-289-0879.