Teen Forced to Choose, Medicate with CBD or Graduate High School?

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It’s an unfortunate truth that sometimes, medical conditions get in the way of getting a proper education – forcing many students to choose homeschooling rather than regular classroom and campus learning. For some, even once a reliable treatment finally produces results that would allow the student to attend and focus through lessons, returning to a traditional school setting is off the table because of medicine itself.

Being federally illegal, most schools are weary of allowing medical cannabis on campus – but some have realized the absolute need for some students to have such medicines in order to go to school at all. However, even in states where schools must allow such medicines if they are administered by a designated caretaker and do not stay on campus, it can still be impossible for some students to stay medicated throughout the day.

Such is the case for Andrew Stinson, a student from Loveland, Colorado, who was born with cerebral palsy and experiences constant muscle spasms, for which the only successful treatment has been 200 milligrams of CBD. Unfortunately, it is impossible for his mother to make it to campus every day to provide the needed mid-day dose, meaning he still misses school, which could prevent him from graduating on time.

His mother Tina says that while the law does allow him to use cannabis oil, "they said the only way that he could use it was if I could come to the school, bring it to the school, apply it and leave with it which is really impossible."

State law does not allow a school nurse to assist in administering the medication, and it certainly doesn’t Andrew to medicate himself as needed – which would be ideal in a situation where the medication can be needed periodically throughout the day.

"You should allow people like me to use what they need to focus better," Andrew said.

What it comes down to is the fact of the matter is that under current law Andrew’s mother Tina must find a way to put aside time during her day – even if it means missing work – in order to ensure her son can get the medicine he needs to get through the day. Otherwise, Andrew must either miss school and delay graduating, or push through the day without the only medicine that has helped him maintain his schooling.