“It can be an expectation of participation:” Oconomowoc School District plans for student drug testing

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OCONOMOWOC (WITI) -- The Oconomowoc School District is set to begin offering students a new random test. But with this type of testing, there's no letter grade involved.

It's not what you'd expect to hear from an educator, but in this case it is appropriate.

"Our hope is that we're not gonna see a lot of positive tests," said Oconomowoc High School Counselor, and AODA Program Coordinator, Scott Bakkum.

On Thursday, March 19th, Bakkum discussed the Oconomowoc School District's plans for student drug testing with District Superintendent Roger Rindo.

"We can't by law create random drug testing for all kids. For those students who participate in activities, it can be an expectation of participation," said Rindo.

This week, the Oconomowoc School Board unanimously passed a measure which allows random drug testing of students in grades 7-12 who participate in any co-curricular activities, including athletics, as well as any student who possesses a parking permit.

While specific parameters, including what type of test will be administered, have yet to be determined, Bakkum says marijuana and opiates are among the drugs for which students will be tested.

"Students will be called down just like they would be called down to receive a message in the main office, so it will be done very discreetly," said Rindo.

Positive tests may have actively-related repercussions, but academic punishments are not planned.

"If kids are having problems and they're identified, we can help steer them towards appropriate resources to get them the help they need," said Rindo.

Funded by a school district grant, the testing will be administered by a third party during school hours beginning this fall.

10 comments

  • Anon

    So they are announcing the student’s name over the intercom for literally the entire school to hear, and they call that discreet. Sure, it could be anything, but I remember high school, and there are really only a handful of students that were regularly called to the office. Once all the new random people start popping up it’s going to be where everyone’s head goes first.

    • Taylor

      Actually no, they will be getting a pass down to the office. So, no other students will know what it’s for…unless that student goes off and tells people.

    • Mic

      They are minors, they have no rights. It is the PARENTS responsibility to raise their child to become an active member of a community.
      With that said, it should not be the school’s duty to ensure that students are remaining drug free, but there is so much accountability placed on educators and school administration that I feel this is a wonderful idea. If teachers are supposed to take all of the responsibility while the parents don’t (or don’t care to) monitor their child’s activities the school should be able to drug test.

  • exlonghauler

    I say start random testing all drivers. If you have a cdl you can expect to be peeing in a cup every now and then per federal law. Why not get everyone. Heck I’m ok with dropping BAC to .04 like cdl holders have to. Yeah it’s a bite in the dupa but if you save a life or two or make these folks with papers behave a little better it is well worth it.

  • Jason

    I’m guessing a kid that’s found himself in trouble with heroin may not be involved in many extracurricular activities. For the kids who smoke pot, this just points them in the direction of drugs like alcohol (the drug that will kill more of their children than all others combined) and cocaine, that will test negative by monday morning. I won’t even start with the message this sends regarding the valuation of safety over privacy and individual rights. It seems to be lost entirely on this community.

  • Anon

    This will work, until the star football player fails and they “let it slide” because it’s oconomowoc and all they care about is sports. Also, the kids that are into hard drugs are complete burnouts and junkies. They don’t care about school, sports, most of them don’t have parking passes & park off campus, because they do random drug searches. They’re going to be busting a bunch of kids for pot. Opiates can be out of your system in 2 days & kids who are in sports…with their higher metabolism, it can be out of their system in a shorter amount of time. I don’t disagree with this, I just think it has a ton of flaws. Also, if students will be getting drug tested, I do feel like it should be necessary for teachers and other staff members to be randomly drug tested too.

  • S M

    Right, a kid on drugs and is still active in sports,your punishment is to take away the PHYSICAL activity that most likely helps deal with issues he/she may be having. Secondly, marijuana is a freaking plant, non-toxic, non-addictive. While no one should be high AT school or work, while driving, etc. But honestly, if my high-school aged child smoked a little pot here and there and grades were decent… compared to the other crazy S%%T out there INCLUDING ALCOHOL , marijuana does not call for such harsh punishment and AODA therapy.

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