Drug Testing: Federal Judge Rejects West Virginia School Board's Random Tests of Teachers

A federal judge in Charleston, West Virginia, Monday stopped the Kanawha County school system's plan to randomly drug test teachers in its tracks, issuing a scathing rebuke of the policy and the school board as he did so. US District Judge Robert Goodwin said the plan would force teachers to submit to an unjustified and unconstitutional search.

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drug testing lab
Despite being warned ahead of time that the county was in for a costly and probably futile legal battle if it approved the policy, the school board did so anyway in a 4-1 vote in October. The West Virginia chapter of the American Federation of Teachers filed suit to block the policy from being implemented in late November, and the West Virginia Education Association and the American Civil Liberties Union joined the fray last month.

On Monday, Judge Goodwin granted the motion for a temporary injunction. Goodwin said the school board's plan to test one-quarter of teachers and other school workers each year was crafted although there was no evidence of a pervasive drug problem in the community and was based on unreasonable worse-case scenario hypotheticals. He asked why the district did not also have a policy to randomly test teachers for tropical diseases.

"Total security for us and our children is only possible -- if unlikely -- in a totalitarian state," Goodwin said. "Who wants to live in a society when a government will stop at nothing to prevent bumps and bruises," he added.

Previous federal court decisions have held that government employees cannot be subjected to random suspicionless drug testing -- with a handful of exceptions, most related to public safety and security. The school board offered up the novel argument that teachers -- and cafeteria workers and janitors -- held "safety sensitive" positions and if they were impaired by drug use their inability to supervise a classroom could jeopardize student safety. But Judge Goodwin wasn't buying that.

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Testing

It shows the inasne depths of uneducated madness that exists in small town USA. There are people aho are so naive that they really believe the lying propaganda that the DEA and the drug free scammers spew.

It is partly political: local board members come out the heroes and the ' liberal courts' will be blamed,,as usual.It is about keeping up appearances and the image of standing against what the squares see as ' immoral ' conduct. They call themselves Christians, or whatever, and then of course have to assign a demonic root to every tree that pops up.

" If you were a good person and believer you would not NEED all those nasty substances..Jesus( Mohammed, krisna, etc. ) is all you need!"

They ses us as in need of spiritual change, and recall the lengths that people throughout history have gone to to' save ' the poor sinner: From the Inquisition to witch hunts..death is the only solution for people who refuse to accept the ' truth' as it is defined by the leaders of that period.

Squares are the problem: liquor swilling phony liar and sissies who need to be far away from influencing our ' leaders' before any change is possible...and with the morons in charge now, it is a bleak forecast indeed.

Random Drug Testing

The federal judge completely wrong.
1. Random drug testing is legal
2. Drug abuse is pervasive across the country, and this is fact that has been proven over and over again.

This action shows how uneducated most people are relative to substance abuse.

You, sir or madam

are completely wrong! It is you who is the uneducated one. There is NO constitutional basis for laws that prohibit ingestion of any substances. What one person ingests is not any concern of others. Random drug testing is just one more unconstitutional activity in a plethora of unconstitutional activites in which our governments (federal, state and local) engage.

KCteacher

Board member Pete Thaw should be voted out ASAP for wasting the county's money on a non-issue. There is no evidence that the county has a drug problem among teachers, therefore he was told that the result would be a loss of revenue that could be better used for technology equipment that West Virginia classrooms sorely need.

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