Drug testing moves from traffic circle to Kelly

Administrator answers questions, provides background


Ethan Eckhart

Student drug testing has been moved this year to the Student Services Suite on the first floor of Kelly Hall.

Ethan Eckhard, Reporter

Along with the members of the Class of 2019, several educators who retired or left for other schools and a few students who transferred, something else is missing from campus this year – the drug truck.

The administration has taken a different approach to drug testing this year. Rather than testing occurring in a vehicle parked on the circle, testing now will take place in Student Services Suite on the first floor of Kelly Hall. This is due in part to changing drug testing companies, with the new company not offering a mobile lab.

 Ms. Kathy Saum, vice principal for attendance and student conduct, answered questions about this change.

Q: How many years has Cathedral tested students for drugs?

A: “This is Cathedral’s 18th year of drug testing.”

Q: What is the purpose of the drug tests? To help students in the future or to keep a clean school?

A: “To keep students from starting in the first place, and to get help for those who test positive. But mostly to be proactive and focus on prevention and help.”

Q: What is the what is the fee for each test?

A: “The cost is about $36 per student.”

Q: Do you believe drug testing has been as effective as you have hoped for?

A: “Yes, very much so. The data does not lie. We have a very low usage rate compared to all other schools in Indiana who also drug test.”

Q: How come there is no longer a truck?

A: “The prices of the old company skyrocketed, and the new company no longer offers a mobile unit.”

Q: Was part of the reasoning to stop kids from leaving school early?

A: “No.”

Q: Did the truck look bad when visitors arrived on campus and saw the drug truck parked in the circle?

A: “Not at all. We liked showing that we were being proactive with such a serious issue that affects all of our society, including Cathedral, in the areas of drugs and alcohol.”

Q: Do we still use the same company from last year?

A: “No.”

Q: Have any of the tests been removed, or do we still use the swab tests, urine test and hair test?

A: “We can still use all three.”

Q: Which test has been the most effective?

A: “Tough to answer because they are all effective depending on the person who used last.”

Q: Are students selected based off suspicion or are the tests random?

A: “Always random unless the student had a previous positive test.”

Q: Do you plan on always using drug tests here?

A: ”Yes, (Principal) Mr. (Dave) Worland likes us being proactive on this issue.”