School of Aviation: Drug Policy
MGA Drug Policy for Aviation Staff, Students, and Instructors
This document describes the Middle Georgia State University (MGA) drug policy as it applies to specified personnel in the MGA Aviation Program. It supersedes the "Middle Georgia State University Drug Policy for
Aviation Students" document approved by Legal Affairs BOR 4/3/07.
BASIS FOR THE POLICY
Middle Georgia State University (MGA) recognizes that poor job performance by individuals involved in aviation-related activities can lead to injury or death. Staff, students, and flight instructors involved
- MGA Flight Management, Air Traffic Management (ATM), Aviation Maintenance Technology (AMT), and Aircraft Structural Technology (AST),
- maintenance of training aircraft,
- operation or maintenance of aircraft and related support equipment,
- instructional equipment and machinery, and/or,
- other related activities (specified herein),
must conduct operations competently and with a full focus on safety.
MGA cannot, and will not tolerate the use, or possession of, alcohol, illegal drugs, or any substance which may impair cognitive or psychomotor functions by staff, students, or instructors on campus property, or during participation in any Aviation Program.
Middle Georgia State University maintains a learning and teaching environment that is drug and alcohol free in accordance with Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, Anti-Drug Provisions of the Georgia Penal Code. Therefore, MGA intends that all aviation staff, students, and flight instructors be free of any chemical impairment during participation in any activities related to training in flight, Air Traffic Management, Aviation Maintenance Technology, Aircraft Structural Technology, or during maintenance of the training aircraft fleet.
Therefore, possession and/or use of any substance or drug which may impair cognitive or psychomotor function by an aviation staff member, student, or flight instructor involved in MGA Aviation Programs is strictly prohibited, either on campus property, in vehicles (including, and most especially concerning, aircraft), or during internships. Within the scope of this policy, staff members, students, and flight instructors are prohibited from using, possessing, distributing, manufacturing, selling, or attempting to sell, illegal substances or drugs.
The following groups will be subject to drug testing:
- Group 1 Flight Management Students
- Group 2 Instructors, student interns, staff employees
- Group 3 ATM Students
- Group 4 AMT Students
- Group 5 AST Students
- Group 6 Specialized Certification Students
- Group 7 Aircraft Maintenance Technicians (Staff Employees)
TESTING FOR PROGRAM PROCEDURES
The Director of Student Services is responsible for directing and overseeing administration of the drug testing program. Reports of drug test results are received by the Director of Student Services.
- Initial Testing
Initial Testing will be performed by an outside agency contracted by the Director of Student Services. A negative report must be received before any individual will be allowed to continue operating or
- Neutral Selection (Random) Testing
Staff employees, students, and flight instructors are subject to drug testing on an on-going basis. Drug testing will be administered at random times during each semester, as determined by the Director of
Student Services. Failure to report for drug screening within the allotted time frame, without approval from the Director of Student Services, constitutes refusal to submit to drug screening (see below).
Individuals selected for testing will be given a "Notice of Neutral Selection" form that will be Time/Date stamped at the time of notification. That individual will then have two hours, after notification, to report to the contracted agency for testing.
- Reasonable Suspicion Testing
Individuals subject to drug testing also may be tested if reasonable suspicion of being under the influence of drugs exists based on observation, behavior, or other relevant, corroborated facts.
- Testing Following an Accident or Incident
Individuals involved in an accident or incident may be subject to drug testing at the discretion of the appropriate Department Chair or staff supervisor.
DRUG TESTING PROCESS/DUE PROCESS
Drug test samples are divided into "A" and "B" samples. First tests are performed on "A" samples. Second (Confirmatory) tests, if required, are performed on "B" samples.
First test results that are negative: The Director of Student Services advises the individual and the appropriate Department Chair or staff director of the results, provides a copy of the report to the individual, and places the report in the individual's file. No further action is required.
First test results that are positive (non-negative results): The Director of Student Services clears the individual, provides a copy of the report to the individual, and places the report in the individual's file. The affected individual is immediately placed on probationary status (removed from operating or performing duties on or in any vehicles, equipment, or machinery associated with the courses of instruction) by the appropriate Department Chair or staff director. Positive test results are forwarded to the appropriate department as required by regulations and as determined by the Director of Student Services.
The affected individual may then elect to accept dismissal from the MGA Aviation Program, or to proceed with "B" sample testing.
Confirmatory test results that are negative: The Director of Student Services advises the individual and the appropriate Department Chair or staff director of the results, provides a copy of the report to the individual, and places the report in the individual's file. The Department Chair or staff director removes the individual from probationary status and authorizes the individual to resume normal activities in the MGA Aviation Program.
Confirmatory test results that are positive: The Director of Student Services advises the individual and the appropriate Department Chair or staff supervisor of the results, provides a copy of the report to the individual, places the report in the individual's file, and notifies the individual in writing of official dismissal from the MGA Aviation Program. Positive test results are forwarded to the appropriate department as required by regulations.
REFUSAL TO SUBMIT TO DRUG TESTING
Refusal to submit to drug testing will lead to automatic dismissal from the MGA Aviation Program.
A student who has been selected for drug testing, and who believes that results will be positive with respect to illegal drugs or substances, may elect to voluntarily disclose that concern to his/her instructor, department chair, or MGA drug testing administrator. Upon such voluntary disclosure the student can select from among two optional courses of action. Failure to exercise either of the following options will be considered refusal to submit to drug testing:
- The student submits to the DRUG TESTING PROCESS as outlined previously in this policy document.
- The student may voluntarily withdraw from the College for the balance of the current semester if the withdrawal occurs prior to the semester mid-point. If the withdrawal occurs subsequent to the
semester mid-point the student will withdraw from the College for the balance of the current semester and for the complete following semester. ("Semester" in this context refers to any of the
Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters.) The student may reapply for admission to the College and the Aviation Program in the appropriate following semester. The student may be readmitted with the approval of
the Division Chair, Aviation Management and Business, or if the student is seeking readmission to the College but not to the Aviation Program, with the approval of the Vice President for Student and Public
Affairs. Before consideration of a readmission application to the Aviation Program the student must, at his or her own expense, submit to another drug test performed by the agency contracted for testing by
the Director of Student Services. If after review the student is readmitted to the Aviation Program, and a second offense occurs, the student will be permanently expelled from the Aviation Program and
referred to the College Judicial process for appropriate action. It should be noted that while a student voluntarily disclosing drug use will not initially be referred to the MGA police department for
legal arrest and action due to the initial disclosure, should the student later be arrested on a drug violation and/or disclose drug use again, appropriate action under the policies of the College will be
undertaken as described above and in the student conduct policies outlined in publications of the College.
PAYMENT FOR DRUG TESTING
Students in Groups 1 - 6 (see Applicability) will pay an "Aviation Drug Test" fee each semester.
Funds will be budgeted for drug testing administered to staff employees and flight instructors.
Funds collected from students will be held in a separate account and used to fund all drug tests administered to students. The fee amount will be determined on an on-going basis by the Vice President for
Fiscal Affairs. At the beginning of each Fall Semester, each respective Department Chair or staff director will advise the Vice President for Fiscal Affairs of the number of students and staff in each group
for that semester, and the projected enrollment/population for the following Fall Semester; a copy will be forwarded by the Department Chair or staff director to the Director of Student Services. From these
data the Vice President for Fiscal Affairs will calculate a fee for the following Fall Semester and thereby adjust the fee as necessary, one year in advance.
Alcohol: ethyl alcohol.
Controlled Substances: a broad category of illegal substance defined in Official Code of Georgia Annotated (O.C.G.A.), Sections 16-13-25 to 16-13-29 in Drug Schedules 1-V, which includes a long list of chemical compounds, opiates, hallucinogens, derivatives, isomers, and other materials. The State Board of Pharmacy may add new material to the list as required.
The MGA Aviation Program may test for the
following in the Substance/Drug Policy: marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, phencyclidine (PCP), or metabolites of any of these substances, alcohol (ethanol) and any other substance/drug
governed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Georgia Department of Human Resources Division of Public Health.
Dangerous Drugs: an even broader category of illegal substance, and is defined in O.C.G.A. 16-13-71 which describes hundreds of chemicals and other compounds. The Georgia General Assembly may add drugs to the list as
Illegal Drug: any substance, other than alcohol, having psychological and/or physiological effects on a human being that is not a prescription or non-prescription medication.
Intern Agency: any agency that has agreed to provide learning opportunities for MGA aviation students. Staff employees, students, or flight instructors who are engaged in intern learning experiences in agencies that
require mandatory drug testing are expected to comply. The MGA Aviation Program may elect to subject an individual to drug testing should an incident occur at an intern agency.
Non prescription medication: a drug that is authorized by federal or state law for general distribution and use without a prescription in the treatment of human diseases, ailment, or injuries.
Neutral Selection (Random) Testing: a mechanism of staff, student, or flight instructor selection for drug testing at any given time throughout the course of study at MGA.
Prescription medication: a drug that is authorized by federal or state law for general distribution and use with a doctor's prescription in the treatment of human diseases, ailments, or injuries.
Reasonable Suspicion Testing: reasonable suspicion based on the belief that a staff member, flight instructor, or student enrolled in a course of study in the MGA Aviation Program has been in violation of the Substance/Drug Policy
according to the following:
- Observable phenomenon, such as direct observation of substance/drug use and/or the physical symptoms or manifestations of being under the influence;
- Abnormal conduct or erratic behavior such as absenteeism, tardiness, significant deterioration of performance, and/or verbal or physical aggression;
- A report of substance/drug use provided by reliable and credible sources and which have been independently corroborated;
- Evidence that an individual has tampered with a substance/drug test while in a course of study at MGA;
- Information that a student has caused or contributed to an accident in the Aviation Program or its intern agencies;
- Evidence that a staff employee, student, or flight instructor is involved in the use, possession, sale, solicitation or transfer of illegal substances/drugs while at MGA or its affiliated intern agencies.
Refusal to Test: a person's verbal statement or actions by not submitting to a screening test within the prescribed time requirements. Refusal to test also extends to an individual's failure to fully cooperate or failure to act in good faith with regard to the drug testing process (e.g., attempts to "trick" or "beat" the system).
Relevant Federal Aviation Regulations:
FAR 65.12 Offenses Involving Alcohol or Drugs
FAR 65.23 Refusal to Submit to a Drug or Alcohol Test
FAR 65.46 Use of Prohibited Drugs
FAR 65.46a Misuse of alcohol
FAR 65.46b Testing for Alcohol
FAR 91.17 Alcohol or Drugs
FAR 91.19 Carriage of Narcotic Drugs, Marijuana, and Depressant or Stimulant Drugs or Substances
All information, reports, statements, memoranda, and test results requested or received by the MGA Aviation Program in accordance with the Substance/Drug Policy are confidential communications and may not be used except under certain circumstances as allowed by the subject individual, the Federal Aviation Administration's Shared Information Act, or court order.