Her parents had tried everything to help their 11-year-old daughter.
She’d gone through chemotherapy to treat her leukemia, and became epileptic as a result. Her parents spent several years using “traditional” medications to deal with her seizure disorder but nothing worked, according to a federal lawsuit. Then a doctor provided them an alternative.
The girl, referred to as A.S. in court documents, now wears a medical marijuana patch on her foot. Sometimes she uses “cannabis oil drops” on her tongue or wrists. The drops contain small amounts of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.
She finally found some relief. The girl’s attorney, Steve Glink, told The Chicago Tribune that since taking the medical marijuana, the elementary school student has fewer seizures and is better able to focus and learn. A “night and day” difference from before, he said.
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But her parents say School District 54, located in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg, Illinois, is denying the girl the opportunity “to enjoy the full benefits” of her education, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. The school says she can’t bring her treatments to Hanover Highlands Elementary School, according to the suit filed Wednesday in Chicago federal court. Her parents say she can’t go to the school without it.
The girl’s doctors explained to officials that she can suffer symptoms that would require marijuana “at any time during the school day,” the newspaper reported. The district would not accommodate them, the suit said.
The parents, identified in the lawsuit as as J.S. and M.S., say the school is violating the child’s rights.
District 54 Superintendent Andy DuRoss told The Chicago Tribune school officials are just following state law, which prohibits them from allowing pot on school grounds.
“We cannot legally grant the request,” he told the newspaper. “We’re going to abide by the law and do our best to support our students within the confines of the law.”
The lawsuit is asking for a preliminary injunction to allow the girl to access and consume medical marijuana at school, a school-related event or on a school bus, as long as it complys with the doctor’s orders.