LPS Weighs Several Factors Before Telling Parents About Pot in School

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LINCOLN, Neb. -- Lincoln Public Schools said they won't always send out a school-wide notification to parents about drugs or alcohol being found in school.

They weigh several factors, including the threat to student safety, before making this decision.

This explains why parents at Schoo Middle School weren't notified when staff found pot in two male students' backpacks last Friday, ages 12 and 13, according to police.

"We would certainly look at the individual situation," Russ Uhing, the director for student services at LPS, said, "and make a decision based on how it impacted other students, the number of students that may have been involved."

LPS said they also try to protect a student's right to privacy, and try to determine if the drug was being distributed before telling every school parent.

"I think we also have to be careful about utilizing messages too often," Uhing said, "to where we don't sometimes hear anything that's said because we're so used to getting things."

Uhing declined to comment on this case specifically. But, he did say that generally, in potentially isolated incidents, it's common to keep everything private between the individual student(s) and their families.

For context, an Irving middle school student brought pot-laced cookies to school in February, and gave them to classmates. It prompted an immediate response from the school to every parent via e-mail.

Lincoln police gave no indication that the two boys at Schoo meant to give the weed out, which may be a reason why parents weren't notified.

"It is not a normal, common occurrence," Uhing said, "for student to be in possession of drugs or alcohol at school.

"Certainly, it happens, but it is not a routine thing by any means."