Drug dogs on campus

Cindy Liu, Staff Writer

High schools typically bring to mind grades and extracurricular activities, but the stress and social influences from a competitive school environment can lead to something less mentioned: drugs. Last Friday, Diamond Bar High School held an assembly during which drug detecting dogs and their handlers demonstrated a search for illegal substances warning students against bringing illegal substances to school.

Earlier this year, as part of a routine drug inspection, the canine team was brought to DBHS to search for illegal substances. The dogs performed sweeps in randomly selected classes throughout the day with their handlers while accompanied by a GLC or administrator.  

During the search, students waited outside the classroom with their teacher while the dogs sniffed each student’s belongings. The dogs are trained to signal to their handlers if traces of drugs, alcohol, commonly abused prescription medications, or gunpowder are detected. If alerted, the staff searched through the indicated bag. In addition to classrooms, the dogs also searched restrooms, storage areas, and cars on the DBHS campus.

“Are there drugs on campus? Of course I hope not, but I believe that there are drugs on campus,” Assistant Principal David Hong said.

According to an email sent out by Hong, the canine team was brought on by a contract established by the Walnut Valley Unified District with Interquest Detection Canines to ensure a safe learning environment at DBHS. While Hong said that students have been caught with drugs every year, he hopes the searches by the canine team will deter students from using or bringing drugs on campus.

If students are caught with illegal substances or firearms in their possession, consequences include suspension, recommendation for a transfer or expulsion, and possible police involvement.

“My number one goal is to keep this campus safe for students and for teachers. It’s my hope that that’s what the dogs will do,” said Hong.