Teens in Gibbon, Nebraska to take breath tests before prom

GIBBON, Nebraska – As in many small Nebraska communities, underage drinking is a problem in the town of Gibbon.

This is why parents and teachers there are taking action to make sure the upcoming senior prom isn’t marred by alcohol.

Students will have to take breath tests before they are allowed attend the prom. The plan was finalized at a school board meeting last night. It’s one that has majority approval from teachers, parents and the students.

“Everyone entering the prom and the post-prom will be given the breathalyzer test before they will be allowed to come in,” Dr. Dale Kruse, superintendent, said.

“I think it’s a good idea because it will prevent the kids from drinking and driving and getting into a possible accident. But, I also think it might have an affect on the atmosphere at the prom. We get all dressed up to go to prom and then were made to take the breathalyzer test when we come in,” Niki Nichols, student council president, sail

More than 75 percent agreed to adopt the zero tolerance alcohol policy at the meeting. Parents will be called to come pick up their kids if they test positive for booze.

“We’re not just trying to put another rule on them. We’re doing this because we care and we want to prevent tragedies plus the roomers that go around. This way everyone knows for sure. This way, we as parents can’t deal with things we don’t know,” Jeanie Engel, mother of a junior, said.

Breathalyzers will also be used at a parent sponsored post-prom event as well.

Nichols says that most students feel the policy is a good idea, although she wishes they had more input into the decision. But, she knows the adults just want to prevent a repeat of recent problems. “At the dance there was some suspicion of some kids being drunk there. Also, we’ve already had an accident that involved kids drinking and driving. We were lucky that no one was killed or seriously injured. We just want to prevent that from happening,” she said.

“It’ll prevent a lot of stupidity at the prom. I mean people come to prom drunk and then they don’t remember what happens at prom, where others remember the stupid things that they did,” Dawna Nichols, senior, said.

If a student’s date tests positive for alcohol and the student does not, neither students will be allowed into the prom.

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