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Local Governments and School Districts Blog

School District Ordered to Allow Student to Use Medical Marijuana in Classroom

Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys
Posted on February 21, 2018
Filed under Local Governments and School Districts

A recent decision from a federal court in Illinois has opened the door to significant debate regarding the use of medical marijuana in a school setting.

The Schaumburg, IL School District has been ordered to allow an 11-year old student to use medical marijuana at school.  The student suffers from a leukemia diagnosis and her treatment for this diagnosis has resulted in semi-regular seizures being experienced by the child.  The use of medical marijuana has significantly reduced the seizures and greatly improved the medical condition of the student.  The student uses a patch on her foot and an oil extract on her wrists to infuse the medical marijuana into her system. 

Even though medical marijuana use is illegal in Illinois, it was determined that this student be allowed to use medical marijuana to assist her in her medical condition and her educational activities.  The parties have agreed to meet in court to see if they can resolve all outstanding issues and establish a long-term plan for this student to participate in school activities.

This is the first decision in this area of medical marijuana usage and creates a starting point for discussion recognizing that the use of medical marijuana is not legal in a number of states.

School districts in Wisconsin have had a few occasions where they have been asked to address the use of medical marijuana oil extract in order to assist a student in addressing medical conditions.  This is a new area and subject to a great deal of debate and discussion.  School districts generally must rely upon the statements and information provided by the treating physician to determine if it is appropriate for the medical marijuana oil extract to be used in the school environment.  We can assume there will be additional court cases to clarify the role of the school district in allowing or overseeing the use of this type of treatment for special needs students.