Perham High School, located about three hours north of the Twin Cities, is the latest to mandate alcohol breath tests in an effort to crack down on prom night drinking.
Officials say all prom-bound students will have to submit to a Breathalyzer test before being admitted to prom or post-prom festivities. Officials sent a letter to parents informing them about the new policy, The Perham Focus reports.
Any student found to have been drinking will be barred from the dance. Officials say students may also face “repercussions from the school and there may be other legal consequences,” as well.
There are no clear numbers on how many Minnesota schools have required prom night breathalyzers.
A St. Charles school was threatened with a lawsuit several years ago after it required a group of seniors to take a breath test before they could gradulate.
Other schools around the country have instituted prom night breath tests, including schools in New Jersey, New York, Florida and Indiana.
Studies have shown underage drinking remains a widespread problem.
The 2011 Youth Risk Behavior Survey found that among high school students, during the past 30 days:
– 39 percent drank some amount of alcohol.
– 22 percent binge drank.
– 8 percent drove after drinking alcohol.
– 24 percent rode with a driver who had been drinking alcohol.