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Mingus considers randomized student-athlete drug testing

Tuesday, Mingus Union Athletic Director Yancey Devore will talk to the district’s governing board about randomized student testing. VVN/Bill Helm

Tuesday, Mingus Union Athletic Director Yancey Devore will talk to the district’s governing board about randomized student testing. VVN/Bill Helm

COTTONWOOD – If Mingus Union High School chooses to implement randomized drug testing of its student athletes, District Superintendent Mike Westcott said Wednesday it will be a matter of intervention.

“We’re proceeding carefully and cautiously,” Westcott said.

Tuesday, Athletic Director Yancey DeVore will tell the district’s governing board what the school knows – and is yet to know – as it considers randomized student drug testing.

The Mingus Union School Board will meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 14 at the school’s library, 1801 E. Fir St. in Cottonwood.

Westcott said Wednesday that the district is looking not so much at testing for performance enhancing drugs as it is looking at testing for recreational drugs.

“The primary concerns of our stakeholders have been recreational drugs,” Westcott said. “There’s been very little concern – not no concern – about the PEDs.”

As Mingus Union is still exploring the cost to run a randomized student drug testing program, Westcott also said that the “cost expands if you expand the amount of drugs you test for.”

DeVore said Thursday that Mingus Union is “looking at a grant to cover some of the costs.”

“I am waiting for more information from the hospital on drug testing logistics and cost,” Devore said.

If Mingus Union decides to implement randomized student drug testing, Westcott said it would be no earlier than the 2020-2021 school year.

Also Tuesday, Mingus Union is expected to elect its president and vice president for 2020. In years prior, the vice president had held the title of clerk. Westcott said that the board will likely change the clerk title to vice president.

Lori Drake served as president in 2019, Carol Anne Teague served as clerk.

A copy of the Jan. 14 agenda can be found at mingusunion.com.

-- Follow Bill Helm on Twitter @AZShutterbug42

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