Pubdate: Tue, 12 Apr 2016
Source: Boston Globe (MA)
Copyright: 2016 Associated Press
Author: Kristen Wyatt, Associated Press


DENVER (AP) - Schools in Colorado would be forced to allow students 
to use medical pot under a bill that cleared its first hurdle Monday 
at the state Legislature.

The bill updates a new law that gives school districts the power to 
permit medical marijuana treatments for students under certain 
conditions. Patient advocates call the law useless because none of 
Colorado's 178 school districts currently allows such use.

The bill cleared a House committee Monday on a vote of 10 to 3 and 
now awaits a vote by the full House.

"This is not about two kids smoking a joint between cars in a parking 
lot," said Jennie Stormes, mother of a teenage boy suspended from 
school last year for having yogurt mixed with cannabis pills to treat 
a disease that gives him seizures.

Colorado would be the second state after New Jersey to require 
schools to accommodate medical pot as long as it is in non-smokeable 
form and is administered by a nurse or caregiver.

School officials testified against the requirement, saying marijuana 
remains illegal under federal law. Kathleen Sullivan, a lawyer for 
the Colorado Association of School Boards, said the requirement could 
endanger about $433 million in federal money that goes to Colorado 
public schools.

But dozens of parents packed a Monday hearing to say their children 
are unable to attend school because schools forbid marijuana treatments.

"They need to make reasonable accommodations so that children who 
need medical marijuana can go to school," said Stacey Linn, a 
Lakewood mother of a 15-year-old with cerebral palsy who is not 
allowed to wear a skin patch delivering a cannabis-derived treatment to school.
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