Legal Briefs

Board of Education of Indep. School Dist. No. 92 of Pottawatomie County v. Earls

The Tecumseh, Oklahoma School District made participation in all extracurricular activities for middle and high school students conditional on their testing drug-free in a urinalysis test, in accordance with their Student Activities Drug Testing Policy. High school students and their parents challenged this policy, claiming that it violated their Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable searches and seizures. This brief, in which Cato was joined by the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, and Common Sense for Drug Policy, supports the students’ claim, arguing that suspicionless urine testing of non-athlete students “does not fit within the closely guarded category of constitutionally permissible suspicionless searches” and is a blatant violation of the right to privacy. The test is not narrowly drawn to satisfy any governmental interest and that it unreasonably singles out students for testing, who, because of their participation in extracurricular activities, are in fact less likely to abuse drugs than their peers.

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