Athlete drug test policy would prove beneficial

JAKE LITTLEJOHN

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Nevada Joint Union High School District established a mandatory random drug testing policy for its athletes in 2013. The policy states that any student that wants to play a high school sport in the NJUHSD will have to sign a waiver that gives their consent to be unknowingly tested for drug use at any point during the season.

The ultimate goal of the policy is to discourage and possibly eliminate substance use and abuse among student athletes of the NJUHSD in order to keep students safe and maintain equal competition among athletes.

The Roseville Joint Union High School District should also enforce this policy to ensure fairness and safety among its community of student athletes. Doing so would keep students from committing illegal acts and would ensure that no athletes have any unnatural advantages over others due to certain substance use.

This policy may not sound appealing to many student athletes, but it will keep students clean and will definitely put pressure on students to be smart when they are playing sports.

If student athletes test positive for the use or consumption of alcohol, cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamines, opiates, steroids, spice or oxycodone, they will not be allowed to participate in any sports for the remainder of the school year or will be forced to go through a complicated process in order to earn back their ability to participate.

Students who test positive will have a chance to compete in their current season of sport again if they sign an athletic code suspension contract, attend all practices without practicing, show proof of enrollment in a drug test program, submit mandatory drug and alcohol tests and sign a comprehensive discipline contract.

All of this is a lot for a student to have to go through to earn back their right to participate for just one occurrence. Enacting this policy would likely persuade student athletes to keep clean and to play their sport(s) honestly. NJUHSD’s goal is to keep students safe and out of trouble; it’s not just to penalize them.

RJUHSD should do this too because it would be an effective way to stop a large amount of students from using drugs. Now, some might say that if this policy is introduced that sports in the RJUHSD would suffer from a participation decline due to students being unwilling to give their consent for testing.

However, I believe that with the policy, the majority of student athletes would still choose to participate in high school sports because either they don’t abuse these types of substances anyway or because they love the sports that they play enough to give up substance abuse.

This policy would bring significant change to the district if it were adopted. Athletes would be assured that their own success or performance would be determined by pure talent alone and wouldn’t be enhanced or hindered by anything unnatural. At the end of the day, an athlete should be able to say that they performed to the best of their ability because of their own pure, unaffected talent.