ACLU Dubs Ohio School Plan As Unlawful

A proposal put forward by an Ohio school district has been dismissed as wasteful and unlawful by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

The ACLU claims that the proposed drug testing of students in Vermilion schools is a violation of the students’ Fourth Amendment rights, as well as a waste of school funds.

drug testingChristine Link, executive director of the Cleveland chapter of the ACLU, shared the organization’s sentiments in a letter that was sent to the Vermilion school board, voicing out her opinion regarding the proposal. Among the points Link made in the two-page letter is that there are other school districts that have tried similar programs but discontinued them, as they were found to be costly and ineffective.

Link specifically shared the experience of Dublin Schools, which implemented drug testing for students in 2006, but decided to discontinue it after only 11 out of 1,473 students tested positive for drugs and spending $35,000 a year for the program, the costs of which were borne by taxpayers.

Link suggested that the district hire a drug counselor instead; this will set the district back around $32,000 per year. This, Link pointed out, may be better than having to spend money on a program that has not been proven to work, and has Constitutional implications.

The points raised by the ACLU will be considered by the school board when they convene for a meeting on June 2, according to Vermilion Schools Superintendent Phil Pempin.

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