TEENS HELD RESPONSIBLE
Judge John LePage said teens involved in the juvenile drug treatment court are required to call in every day from 3 to 6 a.m. to see if they need to be drug tested that morning from 7 to 8.
The early mornings force the teens to set their alarms and call in every day, to keep them disciplined, responsible and accountable, he told members gathered at the Republican Club meeting on Oct. 25 at the Pineville Community Center. LePage said he travels to McDonald County High School on Tuesdays for court so the teens don’t miss class. That practice was started by a previous judge and it’s one LePage continues today. McDonald County Schools superintendent Mark Stanton and High School assistant principal Jeff Wilkie are “a great help to us” in coordinating efforts and lending support, LePage said. Students who get in trouble on school grounds are suspended for 180 days. However, LePage said the situation is reviewed after 60 days. Having a teen at home with nothing to do and both parents working is not the best situation, LePage said. Though officials have to balance the safety of kids who aren’t in trouble, situations need to be revisited and progress monitored, he said. Those who are part of the program are held to a higher standard, LePage said.
“We ride herd on the group pretty tight,” he said.