Vehicle and locker searches in the school

The student handbook does more than just lay out policies regarding drugs and weapons. It also contains clauses that allow the administrators to change a policy and to conduct searches so long as they are necessary and proper. For example, at Mattawan High School, the student handbook has an elastic clause allowing the administration to change any policy at any point during the year if it is necessary in order to stop a distraction or an issue that is affecting student performance.

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It is because of codes and clauses such as these that random locker searches are not a violation of privacy. Above all else, these searches are necessary in order to keep a safe and secure environment for the students. The whole purpose of a school is to create a safe and non-disruptive learning environment. If students have drugs and weapons in their possession, this purpose becomes very hard to fulfill.

By conducting random locker searches, the school and its administrators are cutting back on the distractions and threats in order to make the school a safer place for everyone. Most protesters say a search intrudes on their Fourth Amendment rights and invades their privacy. If students are foolish enough to bring drugs or any other banned objects onto school grounds, then they deserve the possibility of being caught and punished.

If students take the risk of getting caught, then they should be prepared for the consequences. A school is not the place to store dangerous weapons or drugs.

Our Turn: Do random locker searches invade privacy?

Students are in school to get an education. While at school, they should feel safe. Students in schools across the nation have been known to bring alcohol, drugs, and even guns into schools, which threaten not only the learning environment, but also the safety of everyone within the school.

School officials need to balance their desire to maintain a healthy and safe environment, however, with the fact that students are protected by the Constitution. As ruled in Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District , students do not "shed their constitutional rights. In Horton v.

CVHS- School Searches

Goose Creek Independent School District, the efforts of school officials to maintain a healthy and safe learning environment, against the backdrop of drug and alcohol abuse, were weighed against the students' constitutional rights. The decision of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals illustrates that the students' Fourth Amendment rights could not be violated simply because they were on school property, despite the sympathy the court showed for school officials trying to deal with a growing alcohol and drug problem.

In the Goose Creek Independent School District in Texas brought in drug-sniffing dogs in an attempt to deal with a rampant drug and alcohol problem. The dogs were trained to detect more than 60 different controlled and over-the-counter substances. On an unannounced and random basis, dogs were taken to all of the schools in the district to sniff the students' lockers and cars and were brought into the classrooms to sniff the students themselves.

School Lockers: What can a teacher search? |

If a dog indicated that a car or locker had an illegal substance, the student was required to open the locker or vehicle for a search. If the dog indicated a student was carrying an illegal substance, he or she was brought into the school office to be searched. Three students, Robby Horton, Heather Horton, and Sandra Sanchez, speaking for all of the students, sued the school district. They claimed that the dog searches violated their Fourth Amendment rights to be free from illegal searches and seizures, as well as their Fourteenth Amendment rights that assured they would not be deprived of their liberty and property without due process.

Administrative Policy Conversion Key

A random search cannot be used to target any individual student. It depends. But if your locker is considered school property, then your locker can be searched. Your school must give you notice that your locker is school property, such as in student handbooks or posted signs on campus. YES , but there are limits. Your school may use dogs to search for drugs on school campus, including unattended belongings like backpacks. If someone at your school tells you to leave the classroom while drug-sniffing dogs conduct a search, you should try to bring your things with you.

YES , so long as the students searched are picked randomly.