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CAREY, OH (Toledo News Now) -
A growing number of northwest schools are drug testing students in hopes of curbing student drug use. Public schools in Carey are now being added to that list.
School officials say they're starting the new policy with athletes, then moving through extracurricular activities. School officials say 90 to 95 percent of the students participate in one of those activities.
Everyone from student athletes to chess club members, even student drivers will now be tested on-site for drugs.
"There will be steroid type things. Sometimes we can test for THC, sometimes it will test for methamphetamines, opiates," said Carey High School Principal Peter Cole.
Cole says, if students want to participate in anything on campus or request a parking pass, they must consent to random drug screenings. But, Cole says, punishment is not the primary goal.
"We really want to break the cycle, get them off of the drug. Will there be some kind of bite to the policy? Absolutely. There will be some consequence to it," said Cole.
Cole is hoping by testing kids, the district will be able to provide counseling and treatment for those with an addiction.
Current school policy requires suspension if students are caught with drugs. A new policy is being crafted for the drug testing.
"What we're looking more at is a preventative measure, to maybe find that kid who's not able to say 'I need to get off drugs.' This is a way to help them," said Cole.
Drug testing will begin in the 2014-2015 school year. Parents must sign consent first. Cole says it will likely be added into the already existing athletics and extracurricular forms.