The Miami-Dade district school board plans to implement a drug testing program for students beginning this school year, the Miami Herald reported.
The announcement came after a company was charged with providing steroids to athletes, including South Florida high school students. Biogenesis founder Antonio Bosch— who had been masquerading as a licensed doctor— and seven of his associates ran the Coral Gables clinic, which distributed performance-enhancing drugs to both Major League Baseball players and local high school students.
A year and a half ago, a Biogenesis employee leaked Bosch’s client list to the Miami New Times, which led to an investigation that put baseball star Alex Rodriguez on a 211 game suspension.
Miami-Dade superintendent Alberto Carvalho said the timing was just a coincidence.
The school district will allocate $73,000 for the program, but because of the high cost of drug testing, Carvalho hopes to supplement the program with private sponsors.
“We’re going to sensitize the parents, the students, the coaches to this issue very aggressively,” Carvalho said.
The district will decide how often to test, what substances they will test for and whether testing will be random, “suspicion-based” or some combination of the two.
Carvalho said the pilot program will focus on high school students, but could later expand into middle schools.