SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP/KTVU) - California schools may soon allow parents to administer medical marijuana to their children on K-12 campuses.
The California Assembly approved Sen. Jerry Hill's SB 223 bill Monday that lets school boards decide whether parents can administer medical marijuana on school campuses. It would allow the use of marijuana in non-smoking form.
Current law prevents marijuana on school campuses, meaning children who use medical cannabis to treat seizures have to go off campus to get their medication. Supporters of the bill say that's a dangerous and onerous requirement.
Opponents worry about allowing the drug on campus and question whether medical marijuana regulations for children are strong enough.
It's already passed the Senate once, but if it passes again in a final vote it will go to Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. His predecessor, Jerry Brown, vetoed a similar proposal last year.
Hill (D-San Mateo) was inspired by Giovanni "Jo Jo" Jiminez, then, a senior at South San Francisco High School, and his mother, Karina Garcia.
Jo Jo has suffered from epileptic seizures, off and on, since he was three months old. He often wouldn't go to school, just lying in bed because of the violent seizures. His mother tried traditional Western medical remedies, to no avail. She finally found Elysium oil, made by Cannavalon Biosciences in Santa Cruz, which contains 21 mg of CBD and 1 gram of THC, the psychoactive agent in cannabis.
She said she has established a complicated care plan at her school for how to administer the cannabis to her son during the day. But she is barred from bringing the medicine within 1,000 feet of the campus.
"It is vital that we lift the barriers for students with serious medical conditions who rely on medical cannabis to attend school," Hill said in a statement. "SB 223 makes it easier for these children and teens to get the medicine they need without disrupting their school."
KTVU's Lisa Fernandez contributed to this report.