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Legislature Proposes Medical Marijuana Use In Illinois Schools

Kids who use medical marijuana for a qualifying condition might be allowed to use the drug on school grounds under a Illinois proposal. The legislation would allow parents to give cannabis medication to those kids if and when they need it. 
Rep. Lou Lang (D) from Skokie said about 250 kids around the state use cannabis-oil patches to treat a range of conditions from epilepsy to cancer. Although medical marijuana has been legal in Illinois since 2013, Lang said the drug is still banned in schools no matter what.

“If it was insulin or some other product that is not as controversial as cannabis, no one would have this discussion. But because it’s cannabis and because cannabis is illegal in schools, we had to make this provision,” he said.

Under the measure, only parents and legal guardians could administer the drug while the child is at school, and they’d have to do it somewhere where they wouldn’t be disruptive. It would also only allow those kids to be given smokeless products, like patches.

Supporters said the Illinois State Board of Education backs the legislation, which still needs House and Senate approval.

Sam is a Public Affairs Reporting intern for spring 2018, working out the NPR Illinois Statehouse bureau.
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