When proponents of random drug testing emphasized the importance of
confidentiality, they meant it.
In her annual report to the Duneland School Board, Duneland Positive Life
Program Director Gloria Guerrero said that 90 Chesterton High School
students were randomly drug tested this past school year, but would not say
how many of those tested positive.
Guerrero told the school board that the Positive Life Advisory Committee has
decided not to publicly divulge the results, in order to make the program
Random drug testing resumed at CHS in the past school year for the first
time since 1999-00. The random tests are limited to students who drive or
who are in extra or co-curricular events. Students can also be drug tested
based on reasonable suspicion.
The random drug testing program will be expanded to middle school beginning
Guerrero said she definitely feels that simply by having the random drug
tests in place, students are given an incentive to stay away from drugs
since they could lose their driving or extracurricular privileges.
When asked if the numbers suggest that drug use is on the decline or
worsening, Guerrarro said student surveys suggest about the same level of
drug and alcohol use as in previous years. Noting that this was the first
year that the random drug testing resumed, she also said that she will be
able to compare the actual results in consecutive years beginning next year.
Students who test positive are referred to Duneland’s Positive Life Program,
which also includes other referrals and students who voluntarily sign up.
A total of 95 students participated in the program in the past school year.
Of those, 59 parent conferences were held. Also, 31 students voluntarily
participated in student support groups.
Of the students in the drug and alcohol component, 91 percent completed
their program requirements. Of those in the tobacco program, 75 percent
completed successfully. In addition, half of the students were in the second
stage of attempts at quitting smoking, while 25 percent said they were
trying to quit.
Guerrero said the Positive Life Program also held convocations in each high
school grade in order to reach more students about the dangers of drug,
alcohol and tobacco. “We need to reach more than the students who are
referred to me,” she said.
To do this, speakers from the Positive Approach to Teen Health gave
presentations to the 9th and 10 graders. One of the presentations focused on
media lies, and the untold consequences of dangerous behaviors.
Drug enforcement officers gave a presentation to juniors. Seniors attended a
pre-prom presentation given by a speaker whose son died in an
The Positive Life Program also hosted training sessions for teachers on
suicides, student assistance teams and other topics.