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Title:  The Effectiveness of Mandatory-Random Student Drug Testing
Description:

Students involved in extracurricular activities and subject to in-school drug testing reported less substance use than comparable students in high schools without drug testing, according to a new evaluation released today by the Institute of Education Sciences.

Although illicit substance use among adolescents has declined over the past decade, it remains a concern. Under one approach to address this problem, students and their parents agree to students being tested for drugs (and in some cases, tobacco or alcohol) on a random basis as a condition of participation in athletic or other school-sponsored competitive extracurricular activities.

The study, The Effectiveness of Mandatory-Random Student Drug Testing, examined 7 districts that were awarded grants in 2006 by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools to implement mandatory-random drug testing programs in their 36 high schools. The districts volunteered to be in the program and were spread across seven states. Because these were districts committed to adopting such programs and they were clustered in mostly Southern states, the study results cannot be generalized to all high schools nationally.

The evaluation involved more than 4,700 students and compares the substance use reported by those in "treatment" high schools randomly assigned to implement the drug testing program immediately (in the 200708 school year) with the substance use reported by students in "control" schools assigned to delay implementing the program for a year (until 200809).

Online Availability:
Cover Date: July 2010
Web Release: July 13, 2010
Publication #: NCEE 20104025
Center/Program: NCEE
Authors:
Type of Product: Evaluation Report
Keywords:
Questions: For questions about the content of this Evaluation Report, please contact:
Marsha Silverberg.