The Mineral County School Board of Trustees meet in regular meeting on March 19 to discuss the student drug testing policy. The policy started in 2006 and “has been sitting here doing nothing,” according to Board Chairman Keith Neville.

The first reading of the student drug testing policy was read into record.

Neville gave the history of the policy.

He said, “Most people saw the need for this. Not to catch kids, but to protect kids.”

He was asked to come up with a policy and spoke with others around the state.

“It is apparent that we had a problem up at the high school. I was afraid that we would lose a kid.” Neville said.

The drug policy had been addressed by a previous board and superintendent, but the policy had never been put into affect.

“Fortunately for the district, we haven’t lost a kid, yet,” Neville said.

“We have lost these kids…I deal with them every day,” School Board Attorney Sean Rowe corrected.

Current Superintendent Chris Schultz addressed the board and stated that the drug testing should be for any child who wants to participate in extra-curricular activities, “Because they are a right and not a privilege.”

The testing would be a random screening of any students, not just athletes. Those extra-curricular activities were addressed by a parent to include: prom, band concerts, sports functions or even dances.
Neville said that Battle Mountain schools tested each child during their physical.

An audience member said that a permission slip should be included with their registration forms as each child can be linked to an extra-curricular activity within the high school.

“We need everyone’s input on this policy,” Neville said.

The board will look more into the policy in later meetings.

A copy of the draft policy can be picked up at Mineral County High School.