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Colorado: Marijuana Legalization and School Disciplinary Problems

Posted: November 22nd, 2013

(The Denver Post) — In two years of work as an undercover officer with a drug task force, Mike  Dillon encountered plenty of drugs.  But nothing has surprised him as much as  what he has seen in schools lately.

There are no hard numbers yet because school disciplinary statistics do  not isolate  marijuana from general drug violations. But school resource  officers, counselors, nurses, staff and officials with Colorado school safety  and disciplinary programs are anecdotally reporting an increase in  marijuana-related incidents in middle and high schools.

“We have seen a sharp rise in drug-related disciplinary actions which,  anecdotally, from credible sources, is being attributed to the changing social  norms surrounding marijuana,” said Janelle Krueger. Krueger is the  program  manager for  Expelled and At-Risk Student Services for the Colorado Department  of Education and also a longtime  adviser to the Colorado Association of School  Resource Officers.

Krueger said school officials believe the jump is linked to the message that  legalization (even though it is still prohibited for anyone under 21) is sending  to kids: that marijuana is a medicine and a safe and accepted recreational  activity.  It is also  believed to be more available.

Read more: Pot problems in Colorado schools increase with legalization – The Denver Post

Posted in News From The Field
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