Change to Carl Junction High School drug policy stirs controversy

Local nurse speaks out against policy banning CBD
Change to Carl Junction High School drug policy stirs controversy
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A policy change at one Carl Junction school is causing some controversy.

Officials in Carl Junction have extended their drug policy to include the use of CBD products that contain THC, banning it’s use for some students.

Betty Alice Mangan, Registered Nurse, Webb City resident:”What is the goal of the school? Is it to punish kids, or to tell kids to say no to marijuana, or is it to tell them to say no to CBD?”

Screening high school students that participate in extra-curricular activities for THC — the chemical in marijuana that get’s you high — has been a part of the Carl Junction High School’s drug policy for more than 12 years.

Jesse Wall, High School Asst. Principal, Athletic Dir.:”We listed everything that we test for. As part of that, we insured that everyone had an understanding that if they use any over the counter or legally purchased items such as CBD oils that contain THC, then they would be subject to the same consequences.”

In other words, the school says they can only be concerned with the THC.. and not where it came from.

But Betty Mangan, a registered nurse, says CBD oils with THC aren’t the same as marijuana because they have a substantially lower amount of the chemical.. so shouldn’t be treated the same as marijuana.

Mangan:”Usually it would be the high that a person would use marijuana for is to try and get high, but if they’re using low does of CBD and there’s no high, it’s kind of like punishing somebody for something they didn’t actually do.”

She’s also afraid the policy will keep parents from using the product as an alternative medicine for their kids.. something Wall recognizes, but says doesn’t change what the school feels is best.

Wall:”From our standpoint, we have to be consistent within our policy, and it would be very difficult for us to differentiate between saying that they use this type of oil, and their child was not just smoking marijuana.”

Mangan doesn’t have any direct ties to the Carl Junction school district, but is speaking out because she’s confident their decision will influence the policies of other school districts in the area.

Mangan:”Other school districts are gonna start feeling like they need to make some form of standard policy, and Ii hope they do it based on science, and not just on what they think is right and moral.. because there is a difference.”

If a student does test positive for THC, they could be banned from taking part in extra-curricular activities.

We asked to talk to a student at the high school, but the district denied the request, saying the topic was too “controversial”.