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Can School Officials Make Me Take a Drug or Alcohol Test?

The legal status of drug and alcohol tests for students at school varies depending on what state the school is located in, as well as the activities the student in involved in at school.

Some states allow school officials to require students take a drug or alcohol test at the school official¿s discretion. However, other states have laws requiring that school officials must have a reasonable basis for conducting such tests before they can require it from a student. In other words, school officials must already reasonably suspect a student of illegally abusing drugs or alcohol before they can require the student to a test.

However, the Supreme Court has ruled that if the student is an athlete for a school-sponsored sports team, the student can be required by the school to take drug and alcohol tests with or without reasonable basis for such tests.

Is it Legal for Schools to Use Metal Detectors?

Courts have allowed metal detectors in schools in many states because metal detectors are considered less intrusive on a student's right to privacy than a manual search of a student by a school official or police officer.

However, some states require that certain restrictions be placed on the use of metal detectors. One example is in California metal detectors cannot be used discriminately, but must apply to all the students in the school.

Can a School Require Me to Disclose Information about My Sexual Practices?

Absolutely not. When it comes to sex and your body, your school has no business in trying to obtain information from you. Whether you want to obtain some form of birth control or even have an abortion, you do not have to get permission from your school.

Also, your school cannot force you to take an HIV test or require you to disclose the results of any HIV tests you have taken in the past.

What Should I Do if I Feel My School Has Interfered with My Right to Privacy?

You may want to consult a civil rights attorney. Your attorney will be able to advise you of your rights and let you know if you may be entitled to money damages in a lawsuit against your school.

Photo of page author Ken LaMance

, LegalMatch Law Library Managing Editor and Attorney at Law

Last Modified: 10-25-2011 02:29 PM PDT

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