Missouri high school reportedly to use hair samples for random drug tests

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A high school in Missouri is reportedly taking drastic measures to ensure its student body is drug free — mandatory, random drug testing using hair samples.

Beginning in the 2013-2014 school year, students at Rockhurst High School in Kansas City will be mandated to undergo random drug testing by submitting roughly 60 strands of hair to a staff member at the 1,000-student school, KSHB.com reports.

Using a company called Psychemedics, officials at the Jesuit school said students will be tested for a variety of substances over the previous 90 days, including cocaine, PCP, opiates, methamphetamine, marijuana and binge alcohol.

“Our point is, if we do encounter a student who has made some bad decisions with drugs or alcohol, we will be able to intervene, get the parents involved, get him help if necessary, and then help him get back on a path of better decision making, healthier choices for his life,” Rockhurst Principal Greg Harkness told the website.

If a student tests positive for any substance, according to the new policy, a guidance counselor will be notified. The counselor will then notify the student’s parents to determine how to best help the child.

The student would then be given 90 days to be drug-free, with no notification sent to administrative personnel. The incident would only be noted in the student’s guidance file, which would later be destroyed upon graduation and will not be sent to colleges or universities. The document would only become public if subpoenaed, the website reports.

A significant change in students’ perceptions, natural teen transformation, publicized changes with marijuana in our country, new research on brain development and the Internet were cited as reasons for the policy shift.

Click for more from KSHB.com.