Teen Deaths Due to Drug Use Make Testing More Necessary


Student athletes are among the many who have used or feel pressured to use illegal drugs. Most schools conduct random drug tests for student athletes in an attempt to prevent or lessen the use of drugs among teens.  The National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics (NCDAS) states “1-in-8 teens abuse drugs.” Athletic Director Sonny Schofield said, “we let students know that in order to be eligible for sports, they have to sign a consent form for drug testing. It’s required for all North Carolina public schools.” The consequences of a failed drug test can mean the student is suspended from play for two weeks or even removal from the team. Student athletes are also required to attend a three day drug training program. According to the NCDAS, “2.08 million (8.33%) of 12 to 17-year-olds nationwide report using drugs.” A 2019 study from NCDAS reports “4,777 Americans 15 to 24 years old died of an overdose or illicit drugs in one year.” 


While many student athletes may feel random drug testing is an invasion of their privacy or an unfair expectation, the idea behind drug testing is ultimately prevention. Student athletes tend to be role models and often have a greater influence which makes the need for drug testing even more necessary.