Medical Marijuana in Schools? Washington is Weighing It.
Lawmakers in Washington state are weighing a bill that would give parents of children prescribed medical marijuana the right to administer that medicine to their child at school. House Bill 1060 , which was filed Jan. 4th and from there referred to the Committee of Education, would also give parents the right to administer the medication on buses or at school-sponsored events.
This would be a major victory for parents of children grappling with conditions that require medical marijuana. Some of these children have been diagnosed with conditions like autism and epilepsy, and marijuana has helped to reduce their symptoms, focus and possibly even participate in a class as any typical child would.
But of course, allowing children to use marijuana as medicine has long been a subject of controversy. It has grown increasingly accepted as there have been a number of anecdotal success stories, as well as studies that suggest children with autism, cancer, epilepsy and other conditions may have a better quality of life if they have access to marijuana therapy. In a lot of cases, it only requires a tiny amount of cannabis oil given over the duration of the day to have a substantial impact on the lives and futures of these children.
Two years ago, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed a measure that gave parents or guardians of minors with a medical marijuana recommendation to administer the drug to their child while on school grounds. That measure was significant not only for the fact that it was important for parents in that state, but because Christie has never been a strong supporter of marijuana whatsoever. Further, he never had any intention of broadening the medical marijuana program that was in place when he took office. It was surprising and set a precedent that was soon followed by Colorado.
Both Washington state and Colorado were the first in the nation to approve marijuana for recreational purposes. However, giving the drug to children – even those for whom it is medically necessary – has long been a controversial subject. That’s why even in Colorado after the state law was passed allowing schools to do so, many schools haven’t determined yet whether they will give the green light to let parents do it.
For now, that means parents who need to administer the drug to their child throughout the day have to go to the trouble of going to the school, pulling their child out of class, taking them off campus, administering the drug somewhere else, and then signing them back in to school. The schools that have been so far cooperative have mostly designated a private room for the medicine to be given.
If the bill in Washington state passes, it will mark a significant improvement in the medical marijuana program in the state, as it will offer more children the chance to get the most out of their education. Our L.A. marijuana lawyers believe no child should be denied that opportunity, regardless of what kind of medicine they require in order to function on a day-to-day basis.
The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients and those facing marijuana charges. Call us at 949-375-4734.
Washington Lawmakers Move to Allow Medical Marijuana in Schools, Jan. 19, 2017, By Julia Granowicz, The Marijuana Times
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