Earlier this week, parents of a suburban Chicago elementary school student suffering from leukemia sued a Schaumburg-based school district and the state of IL for her to have the right to take medical marijuana at school. But the district denied the fifth grader's request because state law prohibits even medical marijuana on school grounds or school buses.
A federal judge gave the ruling Friday after the girl's parents sued their daughter's school district. An assistant attorney general told Blakey his office would allow the school to administer the drug until his office can figure out how to address the state law. She can think more clearly, concentrate and speak longer sentences because she is taking the marijuana oil, her parents said.
Jim and Maureen Surin have sued the state of IL on behalf of their daughter Ashley (right) over the state's medical marijuana law. A recent prescription for medical marijuana is illegal in some places in IL, including her Schaumburg school.
The school district said it had concerns that its employees could face penalties for helping Ashley with her treatments. Sometimes she uses "cannabis oil drops" on her tongue or wrists.
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Although she is now leukemia-free, her doctors have certified her to use medicinal marijuana to treat her seizures.
"The school would like to see a legislative change so that not just Ashley could benefit from this today, but other students can", said school district attorney Darcy Kriha. Late previous year, a physician prescribed a ketogenic (high fat, low carbohydrate) diet and medical marijuana for Ashley - what her parents say is proving to be a "golden cure". However, the state law prohibits use at schools and dictates that school personnel are not required to be caregivers to administer cannabis, and are not immune from prosecution for possession or distribution of the drug. Jack, who had cerebral palsy, died in 2016. The child suffers from seizures following a battle with leukemia.
The parents, identified in the lawsuit as as J.S. and M.S., say the school is violating the child's rights. They hope she continues to improve as she is weaned off the other medications and as she gets back to school.