Miami-Dade High Schools to Start Testing for Steroids

by Greg Pollowitz

I get what they’re trying to do here, but I’m not sure they realize how hard it will be to implement an effective program. Via the Miami Herald:

A day after Biogenesis founder Antonio Bosch admitted to providing steroids to — among others — high school athletes, the Miami-Dade School Board announced its commitment to start a testing program.

The steroid testing will be a pilot program and will get under way during the coming school year, Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said Wednesday.

Carvalho said the school district will allocate about $73,000 for the program the first year, to be implemented by a vendor as yet to be selected. Since the cost of analyzing a test is more than $50, that won’t pay for a lot of testing. Carvalho hopes to supplement that amount by getting private sponsors.

Whatever the scope, it could discourage steroid use, the superintendent hopes — the theory being that any testing will act as a deterrent.

In designing a testing program, an athletic body must decide how often to test, for what substances and whether testing will be random, “suspicion-based” or some combination of the two.

“We’re going to sensitize the parents, the students, the coaches to this issue very aggressively,” Carvalho said.

As for the argument that this will “discourage steroid use,” there is testing in college and pro sports and athletes use performance enhancing drugs all the time. Another problem is that whatever program the high schools use will be less invasive than the testing of adult athletes, i.e., would you as a parent let somebody you don’t know watch your son or daughter urinate in cup? I certainly wouldn’t. But getting rid of the invasiveness of the tests opens the window to cheating. 

The rest from the Herald here.