By unanimous vote last month, the Hopewell Valley Regional School District’s Board of Education approved a random substance screen policy for students in grades 9 -12 with a targeted start date of September, 2018.
“This is not an easy recommendation to make. Why are we here? Because we have a problem,” said HVRSD Superintendent Dr. Tom Smith, who explained that half the current high school students at Hopewell Valley Central High School not only saw drug and alcohol use among fellow students but viewed the usage as rising to a problem.
“We’ve done a lot to support our students and this is the next logical step,” Smith continued.
Board of Education vice president Lisa Wolff added that the policy is meant to serve as a deterrent and she sited the complete success of instituting a breathalyzer policy at school dances, “The primary reason… is [we’re] looking for a deterrent effect… When kids know they are going to be tested and are presented with peer pressure, it makes it easier on them. It gives them a good excuse to say no.”
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