Drugs tests becoming a back-to-school trend for parents concerned about their kids
PHOENIX - It's back to school time.
Did you get the pencils? The binders? What about the drug tests?
Yes, drug tests.
A Phoenix lab says this time every year demand goes up because parents want to know what their kids were up to during the summer.
There are a lot of opinions on this topic, but drug tests are nothing new. In fact, for the last few decades, many Arizona school districts have allowed random drug tests for students.
With marijuana legal for adults and the easy access to vaping, many parents just want to know.
Judy Zach is wrapping up her back-to-school list for her pre-schooler. "I cycle down the list, and usually the dollar store has really good prices," she said.
The list is different for every class, and some families have added something new for older kids, back-to-school drug tests.
"No. No I did not know. None of my friends do that. I never encountered anything like this," Zach said when asked if she's heard of parents doing this.
Any Lab Test Now in Phoenix says every year they get busy with parents testing kids.
"This is typically when kids have a lot more free time hanging out with friends, getting to parties maybe they shouldn’t be at. Typically, the summer is where kids are doing nothing all day, so they figure other ways to do stuff," says Kaitlyn Brewster with Any Lab Test Now.
She says they can check for anything discretely using different testing panels, like urine tests or scissors for hair tests.
It's not just parents asking, either, she says. More and more school districts have started random drug tests of students throughout the years.
Over a 10-year period, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says school districts with drug test policies have grown from 25% to 38%, and that includes many Arizona high schools.
Brewster says ages have started trending younger, though.
"When I first started here, you’d see 17, 16, now it’s all the way down to 8th and 7th grade. Especially when it comes to THC and nicotine, it’s a big one. 8th graders nowadays are vaping," Brewster said.