An elementary school in New Jersey is about to vote on introducing random drug-testing for its students. The School Board is confident that the measure will pass. The Principal supports the measure because she believes it will be an effective ‘deterrent’.

“We’re hoping that the students if they’re at say a party or someone’s house or just hanging out somewhere, that they’ll say ‘I don’t want to get involved in drinking or using any drug because tomorrow could be a drug testing day,’”

It’s a shame she believes that it will be an effective deterrent. The evidence suggests otherwise. From Jenny McWhirter, Chair of the UK’s Drug Education Forum:

There is an emerging evidence base for what works in drug education…There is no evidence that random drug testing will delay or prevent drug use by young people (although introducing drug testing and then removing it may increase drug use) and there is much expert opinion that drug testing may increase the harm from drugs amongst the most vulnerable groups of young people, particularly truants and excludees.

via the Agitator