A legislative sub-committee reviewing the medical cannabis statute recently approved recommendations for changes to the state law that could affect schools.
The biggest proposed change would permit a school to prohibit the use of medical cannabis on school grounds unless the adopt a school board policy allowing it.
However, the proposed changes have multiple steps to go before becoming law, districts still need to follow the current DOE rules, which state statute requires, and ASBSD’s current sample policies on medical cannabis administration are applicable.
Rep. Caleb Finck said the proposed change would allow school districts the option to “opt-in” to allowing medical cannabis administration on school grounds through the policy adoption process in order “to meet their (district) needs and the students.”
A public school student who is a medical marijuana cardholder is not permitted to use medical marijuana on school grounds, on a school bus, or at a school activity unless the school district adopts a policy permitting the use. Any adopted policy shall require that medical marijuana:
- may only be a nonsmokeable and nonvapable form;
- may be administered only by a parent or legal guardian;
- may not be administered in a manner that is disruptive to the educational environment or causes exposure to other students.
Subcommittee members also approved an amendment adding a “medical power of attorney” individual as someone who can administer medical cannabis to students on school grounds in addition to “the parent or legal guardian.”
Rep. Taylor Rehfeldt noted the addition of a medical power of attorney would provide “some possibility” of more “help to administer the medication” beyond just a parent guardian, who may not be able to administer the medication during the day.
Additional proposed changes include prohibiting a school district from disciplinary action against a student who required medical cannabis, notes the act does not apply to a public school district if it jeopardizes federal funding and requires any policy adopted be posted on the school’s website.
The subcommittee’s proposed changes now move to the Marijuana Interim Study committee for review and IF approved would then by introduced as a bill(s) for the 2022 legislative session and go through the legislative process.
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