The Amity Board of Education is referring its policy on the use of drug sniffing dogs to its policy committee for review based on a request from two board members.
"I attended a drug forum and talked to parents and the school resource officer, and they're concerned," says Steven DeMaio. "Kids know the dogs aren't allowed to sniff them."
He asked the board to consider sending the policy which allows dogs only to sniff the school building for drugs back for review and a possible update. He said parents have told him they'd have no problem with drug sniffing dogs entering classrooms and sniffing students.
Superintendent of schools John Brady prefers not to allow dogs to sniff students in the classroom. He says it could cause a frightening event for kids who are scared of dogs: "A police officer dressed assault style and a drug sniffing dog in the classroom will change the nature of the school from a safe and welcoming place to one where students feel fearful."
High School Principal Charles Britton supported Brady's sentiments: "I'm confident that the existing policy provides the leverage and flexibility to deter - which is the primary purpose of drug sniffing dogs - or catch students with drugs."
Orange Parent David Guzowski share his concerns: "We should be able to look in the mirror every morning and know that we've done all we can," to eliminate drugs at the high school.
"I can't wrap my head around the fact that kids down the street from me are involved with drugs. It's easy to buy heroine now and the kids know that as long as they hold the drugs on their person, dogs can't sniff them at the high school," Guzowski says.
Administrators were tight-lipped when asked about preventative actions they take regarding students with drugs in school since it's a matter or security.
Board of Education members Sue Cohen, Thomas Hurley, Christopher Browe, Diane Crocco, Rita Gedansky and Tracey Lane Russo are on the policy committee.