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"Older" adolescents with no history of drug problems should not be required to undergo drug tests before participating in athletics and other school activities, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

In a statement on adolescent drug testing, the group also opposes making student athletes the focus of involuntary screening efforts.

"If the primary purpose of drug screening was health promotion, there would be little reason for singling out student athletes, as the use of illicit drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are prevalent throughout the adolescent population," the statement argues.

Although "voluntary" screening programs are acceptable, the group says, they are unlikely to detect many drug abusers and can assume a coercive aspect.

Parental permission may be sufficient for the involuntary screening of younger students and older adolescents who are at high risk of substance abuse, the association maintains. The statement does not specify at what age students should be considered older adolescents.

The Maxwell Communication Corporation, a British publishing firm, has purchased Jossey-Bass Inc. for $8 million in cash.

Maxwell bought Macmillan Inc., a leading U.S. textbook publisher, late last year.

The San Francisco-based Jossey-Bass specializes in titles in public administration and business and management, as well as books for education professionals. The sale of the company is not expected to affect its plans to expand its list of books, quarterly series, and audiotapes, according to Steven Piersanti, who will serve as president and chief executive officer of the company.

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