High school to test for students' weekend drinking
PEQUANNOCK, N.J. (AP) -- Some teenagers who drink over the weekend could be in big trouble come Monday morning: A New Jersey school district plans to institute random urine tests capable of detecting whether alcohol was consumed up to 80 hours earlier.
Pequannock Township High, with about 800 students, said it will begin administering the tests next Monday.
"This is a major issue for America," School Superintendent Larrie Reynolds said Tuesday. "There are more kids that die each year in alcohol-related traffic deaths than there are soldiers who have died in Iraq. The numbers are staggering."
At least one other New Jersey high school, in Middletown, employs the EtG test, which screens for ethyl glucuronide, a substance produced by the body when it metabolizes alcohol.
Pequannock teenagers who participate in sports or other extracurricular activities, or drive to school, are already tested for illegal drugs, under a 2005 program prompted by the heroin overdose of a student.
Students who test positive for alcohol will not be kicked off teams or barred from extracurricular activities. Instead they will receive counseling and their parents will be notified, Reynolds said.
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