Drug search violates students’ rights

Drug search violates students' rights

Samantha Godding, Editor-in-Chief

“Students have no rights.”

Mr. Bylicki says this over and over… and sadly he’s 100% right.

In New Jersey v. T.L.O.,the Supreme Court ruled that school searches are reasonable under the Fourth Amendment based upon a finding that:

1)  A search of a student at its inception requires reasonable ground for suspecting the search will turn up evidence that the student is violating the law or school rules.

2) The scope of the search must be reasonable based upon the facts surrounding the search.

How can you tell me that searching bags, cars,  and lockers randomly is right according to this case?

You can’t, because unreasonable search and seizure stretches to all possessions and belongings of a person.

The LHS handbooks states “school personnel may search a student’s belongings such as clothes, backpack, handbag, wallet … when school personnel reasonably believe that the student has or the student’s belongings contain an illegal substance/object or evidence of activity which violates the law or disciplinary code.”

But putting the school in a “soft lockdown” (whatever that means) and having students line their bags up in the hallway is not “reasonable.” In this case, the search was  random and violates the fourth amendment.

Another part of the search that was unreasonable was searching students’ cars. We have to pay $180 a year to park at the high school or at Vet’s, so how can the police officers and administrators search our cars when we pay for our own spots? It could be said that we rent them just like one would rent an apartment, but a warrant would still be required to search an apartment. Therefore, a warrant should be required to search students’ cars.

I’m not saying it’s ok to do to illegal activities and I’m not patting the kids on the back who don’t get caught, but school officials have no right to search our cars, bags, or person without probable cause.

By searching students and their possessions, administrators are directly violating students’ fourth amendment rights, and in the United States I don’t know how that’s constitutional.

But congratulations Ludlow High School for scaring students, and even arresting a few; hopefully,this “reasonable search and seizure” proved beneficial for you.