Education A State Capitals Roundup

Mass. Lieutenant Governor Outlines Anti-Drug Plan

By Robert C. Johnston — May 24, 2005 1 min read

Massachusetts Lt. Gov. Kerry Murphy Healey outlined a plan last week to set up voluntary drug-testing programs in public high schools.

The plan, part of a $9.1 million substance-abuse package outlined May 16, would expand current drug-testing policies by allowing participating high schools to test students during regular school hours, provided their parents had given permission. Some schools now conduct drug and alcohol tests during after-school events.

The results would be given to the students’ parents and schools, but not to police. The intent is not to be punitive, said Laura Nicoll, a spokeswoman for the lieutenant governor. Noting Massachusetts’ high rate of substance abuse by teenagers, Ms. Healey, a Republican, also proposed creating two “sobriety high schools,” each serving up to 100 recovering substance abusers.