NEW JERSEY: The Northern Valley Regional High School District’s plan to launch random drug testing angered parents, who turned out en masse at a recent Board of Education meeting to question a measure being considered by more and more North Jersey schools in the face of a growing teenage drug scourge.
Once reserved for elite athletes, drug testing is now employed by at least a dozen public high schools in North Jersey, including Waldwick, Fort Lee, Kinnelon, North Bergen and River Dell. Northern Valley Regional and West Milford are among those considering it. And in the past year, drug testing has begun moving into middle schools in New Jersey.
Administrators in districts with random testing boast of a sharp decline in drug- and alcohol-related incidents among students. The results have assuaged some parents’ initial fears that testing would be an invasion of privacy and do little to cut down on drug use.