ROCHELLE (WIFR) – Another Stateline school will be testing their student athletes for drugs. Administrators say they’re not trying to invade students’ privacy, but rather protect kids.
Carl Harvey says he loves watching his freshman grandson play football at Rochelle High School, but Harvey says he takes pride knowing the school is making sure his grandson stays away from drugs.
“It’s for easy for kids these days, especially with drugs and alcohol, things all available… it concerns me.”
The school passed a new drug testing police for students playing sports or doing other after school activities. There will be randomized drug tests, looking for amphetamines, alcohol, prescription, or other drugs like marijuana. School superintendent Jamie Craven says the program is designed to help students, not punish them.
“I don’t think there’s any question that there’s an increase in drug use among teens. If a student tests positive, we want to help them,” says Jamie Craven, Superintendent RTHS.
School leaders says the program isn’t in response to any specific problems at Rochelle High. Athletic Director and head football coach Kevin Crandall says it’s all about being proactive.
“There’s a lot of our kids I know if they had the chance of losing their ability to play sports or their extracurricular or just getting caught and having that out there, I think they would stay away from it,” said Kevin Crandall, RTHS Football Head Coach/Athletic Director.
“Kids, as they are developing, brains are developing, they’re trying to figure out what kind of moral code they’re going to have and how they want to live their life. Drugs and alcohol just throw a wrench in a lot of that for kids.”
“There are going to be people that think that they should have the right to do what they want within reason, for the most part, the people in Rochelle want their children to be healthy and clean.”
Penalties for testing positive are partial suspensions from those activities, but not from school. Services will also be provided to students who are caught using drugs or drinking alcohol.
Students that are not taking part in after-school activities can be tested as well , but that’s only if parents ask the school to add them to the list of students who can be tested. There are other Stateline schools who have similar polices