Random Drug Testing To Begin At Biloxi Schools

Biloxi is joining a growing number of school districts that test students for illegal drug use.

School Superintendent Paul Tisdale announced Monday that begining next year, any 7th through 12th grader will be subject to random testing if he or she falls into certain categories.

The list includes all participants in activities put on by the Mississippi High School Activities Association. For instance choir, band and athletics.

Also, any student that drives to campus is subject to testing. And those who take classes that require machinery or chemicals, like auto body, welding, and chemistry.

The superintendent says the new policy comes from concern over students bringing illegal drugs to school or taking them before they arrive.

"In some instances parents really have no idea their children are using. And we feel that if the parents are cooperative and willing to work with us, then there may be another option that has not been used in the past in Biloxi. Rather than expel them, we'll see if they can't get some type of treatment at the parents' expense," Tisdale said.

The school board is still considering what type of test will be used and what the consequences will be for testing positive.