High school announces mandatory drug tests for students starting in January

HAMILTON, Ohio — A Catholic high school in Ohio announced it will begin drug testing its students in January, officials said.

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Badin High School, a Butler County Catholic school in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, announced the measure Tuesday. School officials at the Hamilton school said each of its more than 500 students will be subject to unannounced testing starting in January through the end of the school year.

"This is in the best interests of the students," Badin Principal Brian Pendergest told the Journal-News. "The impact of drug use on young students and their families is staggering and our community is not immune to this issue. Being proactive on drug testing is the appropriate action on our part.

“We’re talking about a health and wellness issue, not a punitive issue. For their own well being, students should not be doing drugs. We want to help them make the right choices.”

Badin is the second area Catholic high school to announce drug testing programs for students.

In the 2018-19 school year, Fenwick High School in Middletown’s Warren County portion of the city saw officials begin student drug testing.

Officials underlined that test results would be strictly confidential between the school, the student and the student's family. Each student will be randomly tested at least once per school year.

“If a student tests positive, our first response will be to work with the families and the student to try to avoid these habits in the future,” Pendergest said. “Our objective is not to catch students doing drugs. Our objective is to help students not do drugs.”