Creighton Prep HEALTH AND Wellness Program
At the beginning of the 2014-2015 academic year, Creighton Prep will implement mandatory and random drug and alcohol testing for all students. This is part of a developing health and wellness program at Prep and an ongoing commitment by the school to the Jesuit philosophy of cura personalis, or “care for the whole person.”
The drug and alcohol testing program will:
- Educate students about substance use and discourage use through verifiable means
- Provide earlier intervention that focuses initially on non-disciplinary support
- Foster an environment that makes it easier for students to say “no”
View the policy as it is scheduled to appear in the 2014-2015 Student-Parent Handbook.
Existing Health and Wellness Program Components
1. Performance Enhancing Drug Policy
Any student-athlete who possesses, distributes, ingests or otherwise uses any of the banned substances listed here, without written prescription by a fully-licensed physician to treat a medical condition, violates the Creighton Preparatory School sportsmanship rule, and is subject to the following penalties and procedures
- A student who is found to have used a substance on the list of banned drugs, either through random testing or according to the rules of apprehension stated in the Student-Parent Handbook, shall be declared ineligible to participate in Creighton Preparatory School athletics (both NSAA sanctioned sports and club sports), for one calendar year (365 days) after the date of the positive drug test. In order to be reinstated after one calendar year, the student must submit to random testing for the duration of the suspension. A student who fails a drug test during the suspension shall be declared permanently ineligible.
- After reinstatement, any student who tests positive a second time for a substance on the list of banned drugs shall be declared permanently ineligible to participate in Creighton Preparatory School athletics (both NSAA sanctioned sports and club sports).
- A student who tests positive for any banned substance is also subject to the general school policy on substance abuse as delineated in the Student-Parent Handbook.
- A student who tests positive may challenge the finding by following the protocol described in the Student-Parent Handbook. The original specimen, which will be retained by the lab, will then undergo a second analysis. If the second analysis is negative, the student will be immediately reinstated. If the second analysis is also positive, the student will remain suspended and the student or his family will be responsible for the cost of the second analysis.
2. Fitness for Life Course Sequence
Fitness for Life is an individualized, concepts-based course designed to give students the knowledge and skills necessary for self-assessment, creativity, conduct, evaluation, and designing personal fitness programs. The course is a combination of classroom and activity-based learning activities with a focus on proper nutrition and the mastery of skills necessary for students to take ownership in their personal lifetime fitness. Through participation, students learn to compare the fitness benefits in a variety of individual and team activities. Students should feel free to participate and explore without the fear of failure, harm or ridicule.
Fitness for Life II is offered to juniors and seniors who have successfully completed Fitness for Life I. Students will participate in an advanced strength and conditioning program that includes speed, agility, coordination and power. Students will develop a nine-week program that will emphasize those skills, master proper safety technique and understand proper body movement. Collaboration with the instructor and classmates will be promoted through relevant projects, activities and instruction.
3. Concussion Policy
Creighton Prep Athletics follows LB260, the Concussion Awareness Act, which took effect July 1, 2012. This act states that all athletes suspected of having sustained a concussion in practice or competition will be removed from play. The athlete’s parents will be notified immediately and the athlete will be unable to return to play until he is cleared by a licensed medical professional. The licensed medical professional and the parent must provide written permission to return to play.
Licensed medical professional is defined as a physician or a licensed practitioner under the direct supervision of a physician. This includes a certified athletic trainer, a neuropsychologist or some other qualified individual who is (a) registered, licensed, certified or otherwise statutorily recognized by the State of Nebraska to provide health care services and (b) trained in the evaluation and management of traumatic brain injuries among a pediatric population.
Scheduled Town Hall Meetings
If you have questions, feel free to attend one of the town hall meetings on:
- January 9, 15 and 22
- 7:00 p.m.
- The Henry L. Sullivan, S.J. Campus Center, which is located just inside the west entrance to the school from the west parking lot
Frequently Asked Questions
- Why is Creighton Prep testing students for drugs?
Creighton Prep is committed to the Jesuit philosophy of cura personalis, or “care for the whole person" and to a developing health & wellness program whose goal is to form a healthy student ready for college.
- What are the chances that my son will be tested?
Throughout the year, Creighton Prep will randomly choose a group of students to submit to drug and alcohol testing. In the course of an academic year, the school expects 80 to 100 percent of Prep students to be tested.
- What drugs are included in the test?
Alcohol (binge drinking), marijuana, PCPs, amphetamines, cocaine and opiates
- Does the test cover synthetic drugs?
Not at this time, but we are fortunate to have testing available for what amounts to 90 percent of available drugs, including the most frequently used entry level drugs of alcohol and marijuana.
- What do you mean by binge drinking?
Examples of binge drinking include an individual consuming four to five drinks over a short period or about seven drinks over a 30-day period.
- What are the testing procedures?
Hair samples will be collected and tested for the presence of binge drinking, marijuana, PCPs, amphetamines, cocaine and opiates.
- What company will perform the tests?
- Who obtains the hair samples?
Trained school personnel will obtain the hair samples before sending them to Psychemedics in a secured shipment.
One person is required to obtain the hair sample and document chain of custody in the presence of the donor.
- Could the testing procedure lead to a false positive?
Psychemedics participates in proficiency testing and blind-sample testing to test its ability to correctly identify drugs and avoid false positives. They have participated in these programs for many years and have not discovered a false positive result.
They also avoid false positives because of the following aspects of their testing process:
1) The use of mass spectrometry to identify drugs by their unique molecular fingerprints, so substances cannot be “mistaken” for drugs. (By contrast, for example, urinalysis testing has in the past mistaken poppy seed ingestion for the presence of opiate drugs.)
2) They use a distinct barcode for each sample, which can be scanned at every step to make sure they have the correct sample at all times.
3) A unique advantage of hair testing is that Psychemedics can collect another sample for repeat analysis. So, if a donor challenges a result by saying it’s a false positive, the company has a way to resolve it by testing another sample. This has allowed the company to provide the client with the appropriate and accurate rate of the positivity of drug classes.
- Can test results be challenged?
Test results may be challenged. There are procedures that allow a retesting of the initial sample.
- How will I know when my son was tested? What about the results?
For those students whose test results are negative for drugs or alcohol, the Director of Guidance will send a “Letter of Negative Status” home to parents with the date of testing indicated. For those students whose results are positive for drugs or alcohol, the student’s guidance counselor will request an immediate meeting with the student and at least one parent/guardian.
The results of testing at Prep are shared only with the student’s parents/guardian, his counselor and, as needed, school administration. Records related to the student’s drug and alcohol test results and contained in Guidance and Discipline files are destroyed at a specified time after the student graduates from Prep. These records are not sent to colleges.
- What happens if my son tests positive for binge drinking or drugs?
If a student tests positive for the presence of binge drinking or drugs, the student’s guidance counselor will request a meeting with the student and at least one parent/guardian. The purpose of the meeting is to assist the family in seeking any help or interventions. The student will then be tested again in 90 days.
If the student tests positive a second time, a review for disciplinary action and a suspension from co-curricular activities become part of the process. If allowed to continue at Prep, the student will be required to complete a chemical dependency screening at an agency approved by the Guidance Department and be tested again in 90 days.
A third positive test results in dismissal from Prep.
- What if my son takes prescription medication, for example for pain or ADHD?
A student taking prescription medication simply needs to provide documentation of the prescription information to the school. Illegal use of prescription drugs is not uncommon with adolescents. This type of drug abuse is also detectable through these testing methods.
- Can I still seek help from Prep if I have a concern that my son is using illegal substances?
Yes. Parents/guardians are welcome to seek help from Prep if they are concerned about their son using illegal substances. Self-reporting by a parent/guardian or a student will be treated as a counseling issue unless the reporting is the result of a disciplinary incident or disciplinary probation as outlined in Part II of the drug and alcohol policy at Prep.
- Can I view a copy of the letter sent to constituents?
Dear Creighton Prep alumni, parents and friends,
We pray that the beginning of 2014 finds you and your families doing well. As you know, one of the things that makes Creighton Prep so important to all of us is its commitment, as a community, to living the Jesuit philosophy of education. This philosophy includes striving for “the magis” or “the more” as we practice cura personalis, or “care for the whole person,” in our mission to form men of faith, scholarship, leadership and service.
To this end over the past decade, we have offered our students both new opportunities in the classroom and the first pieces of a developing health and wellness program that includes testing for steroids, the Fitness for Life course sequence and concussion testing. To this health and wellness program, we will add mandatory and random drug and alcohol testing at the beginning of the 2014-2015 school year.
The decision to add drug and alcohol testing comes after years of participation in the Nebraska Risk and Protective Factor Student Survey, which confirms adolescents are confronted by a culture of permissiveness and misinformation about drugs and alcohol and their risks. More recent discussions with various Prep constituencies and other Catholic and Jesuit high schools also contributed to the decision, as did information on the vulnerability of young people to these substances, especially via peer pressure, and reflection on how we could complement efforts by parents to dissuade children from use.
Starting in August 2014, hair samples will be collected and tested for binge drinking, marijuana, PCPs, amphetamines, cocaine and opiates. We believe the large majority of our students will test negative, with some using the new policy to open or advance constructive discussions with their families, school counselors and teachers. For those who test positive, a program of evaluation and support begins, with additional testing in 90 days. In the case of a second positive test, a review for disciplinary action becomes part of the process. A third positive test results in dismissal from Prep.
In short, our goal is to compassionately form a healthy young man who has negotiated the external pressures of adolescence in becoming an adult in the service of others, guided primarily by a strong set of internal values.
We look forward to caring for our students in this new way and to your support for an initiative already in place at a number of other Jesuit high schools. For additional information on the new drug and alcohol testing policy at Prep, visit www.creightonprep.org/wellness.
Michael A. Giambelluca John C. Naatz Rev. Thomas Neitzke, S.J.
President Principal Board Chair
Creighton Prep Creighton Prep CP Governing Board
View PDF of letter
- I'd like to view the survey and data used to make this decision.
View The Nebraska Risk and Protective Factor Student Survey State-Level Data.