School-based drug testing doesn’t cut the likelihood that students will try marijuana, but students attending schools where they feel respected are less likely to try drugs, finds a new study.
Researchers at the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia tracked 361 high school students over a year, finding that school drug testing had no effect on their likelihood of smoking cigarettes or marijuana. However,found students who initially reported their school climate as “positive,” with clear rules and a respectful environment, were 20 percent less likely to smoke marijuana and 15 percent less likely to smoke cigarettes. The research was published in the January issue of The Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.
A version of this article appeared in the January 22, 2014 edition of Education Week as School Climate