George Indest HeadshotBy George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

On August 9, 2019, a judge dismissed the claims of parents who said a New Mexico public school discriminated against their epileptic daughter by prohibiting her from using medical marijuana on school grounds. The judge granted a motion to dismiss, stating that the parents did not adequately prove their claims.

The Argument of Administering Medical Marijuana on School Grounds.

According to the order, the girl suffers from life-threatening seizures as a result of Dravet syndrome, a rare and catastrophic form of epilepsy. The parents claim that giving her marijuana daily and at the onset of seizures has significantly reduced their frequency and length.

Additionally, the Department of Health designated the girl as a patient qualified for receiving medical marijuana from her mother under a state law known as the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act.

However, they still ran into trouble because that law also prohibits the possession or use of cannabis on school grounds.


The parents argued the school discriminated against their daughter because non-disabled children are administered medications on school grounds. However, their daughter’s treatment is being refused, according to the opinion.

Despite their arguments, in his decision, the judge stated that in conformity with federal law, the Compassionate Use Act prohibits the storage or administration of cannabis by school staff or on school grounds.

Therefore, “Albuquerque Public Schools refused to allow its staff to store cannabis on school grounds or administer it to her, not because of the student’s disability, but rather because the storage and administration of cannabis are illegal,” according to the order.

To read the judge’s order in full, click here.

For more on Compassionate Use and Florida’s medical marijuana laws, click here to read one of my prior blogs.

To read more about medical marijuana treatment and legislation in Colorado, click here.

Contact Experienced Health Law Attorneys for Medical Marijuana Concerns.

The Health Law Firm attorneys can assist health care providers and facilities, such as doctors, pharmacists, and pharmacies, wanting to participate in the medical marijuana industry. We can properly draft and complete the applications for registration, permitting and/or licensing, while complying with Florida law. We can also represent doctors, pharmacies and pharmacists facing proceedings brought by state regulators or agencies.

To contact The Health Law Firm please call (407) 331-6620 or (850) 439-1001 and visit our website at


Jarvis, Sarah. “NM School Didn’t Discriminate By Banning Medical Cannabis.” Law360. (August 9, 2019). Web.

Perea, Shelby. “Preschooler who needs medical cannabis can’t take it on campus.” Albuquerque Journal. (April 28, 2018). Web.

About the Author: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law is an attorney with The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in Orlando, Florida, area. The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Avenue, Altamonte Springs, Florida 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620.

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