Dogs, Drugs and Deluded Authority
There is legitimate reason to have grave concerns regarding this practice. Every note in circulation carries residues of cocaine and where cannabis is so widely available even to adults it is all to easy to detect in almost any scenario especially at the near molecular trace levels a well trained dog can detect. This leads to false positives where the consequences, especially amongst peers, let alone determined authority eager to justify its 'protectionist' role. Drug Dogs in schools is a dangerous social practice in which the unintended harms are rarely quantified. It portrays 'students' as being under suspicion where there should be none, and sends the message to youth that "all their peers are doing it" when this is a false and misleading impression. Of course, authority is reluctant to acknowledge that they are [ever] part of the problem.
I applaud the insight given the comment "how they will handle the pastoral and press issues should a positive identification be found" - this is a very valid concern, made all the more crucial in the case of false positive.
I recommend anyone who shares these concerns to visit the website that covers drug education and youth and the booklet available there written by Prof. Rodney Skager "Beyond Zero Tolerance" for a Safety First approach to education and drugs. http://www.beyondzerotolerance.com
Blair Anderson, Director
Educators For Sensible Drug Policy,