CJ Harris is a high school student at Warner Robins High School. He needs to take his medical marijuana every six hours for epilepsy. Every day at lunch, his dad, Curtis has to drive to the school and take CJ off of school grounds to take his medicine.
CJ has been taking the marijuana oil via syringe for four months, Times Free Press reports. The rules are apparently different at all schools. For instance, First Presbyterian Day School allows students to use their medicine on school grounds. First Presbyterian is a private school.
CJ said, “I haven’t had a seizure since.”
Curtis Harris said, regarding Houston County school officials, that, “I told them about it, you know, ‘He takes (the) oil for his seizures…, and that’s when they went into a panic, like, ‘We don’t know what to do about this.” They called the head state nurse, and the head state nurse told him that he can’t even have it on campus.”
CJ Harris is apparently the first adolescent medical marijuana patient in Harris County schools since the state created its medical marijuana registry. Approved patients are permitted to possess up to 20-ounces of low-THC marijuana oil for a restricted list of qualifying conditions.
Georgia has just over 1,700 medical marijuana patients. The state has 354 physicians registered to use/administer medical marijuana.
Houston County school district spokesperson Beth McLaughlin says that the school isn’t allowed to store or administer the medicine.
She said, “By law, the only person whose name is on the registration card issued by the Department of Public Health for cannabis oil may store the oil. In addition, per the Safe and Drug Free Schools federal law, the oil may not be brought onto school grounds.”
Bibb County Schools says it would have to revise its policies if it were to allow on-campus use of medical marijuana oil.
Justin Pauly, director of communications for the Georgia School Boards Association said, “We haven’t seen it as of yet. It is definitely going to pop up. It puts the school system in a very difficult position.”
Some fear that allowing on-campus use would put federal funding for the schools at risk.
Allen Peake is helping Georgia families obtain the low-THC oil as there isn’t an option for them to access the medicine in Georgia. He doesn’t charge the families.
Peake said, regarding the situation, that, “Stories like this are happening and will be happening all over our states as the medical cannabis law continues to expand. I’m looking for education administration officials to show some courage and do what’s in the best interest of students.”