What is a CBD Product, and May My Teen Use these Items in School?

What is CBD?

CBD, short for cannabidoil, is the largest non-psychoactive component of marijuana (cannabis plant). CBD oil is derived from industrial hemp, which has less than 0.3% of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the element of marijuana that creates the “high” sensation.

CBD oil is used to make edibles, sprays, capsules, and items such as shampoo and lotion. Online there are hundreds of companies selling CBD products, and the market is expected to grow to more than $2 billion by next year.

Michigan Public Act 642 of 2018 clarifies that CBD oil and other products derived from hemp fall under the definition of industrial hemp, and not the definition of marijuana. This is an important distinction because Michiganders are not required to have a medical marijuana card to purchase CBD and other industrial hemp products.

CBD – is it legal or not?

Most CBD products (except for prescription drugs) are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat diseases and or for other therapeutic uses. Until the FDA approves the use of CBD, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) treats CBD as a Schedule 1 controlled substance.

However, in December of 2018, hemp products were removed from the Controlled Substances Act, meaning those that do not exceed the 0.3% THC are no longer considered a controlled substance. The gray area is whether the CBD oil’s use as something that is ingested (rather than a topical solution) is legal because the FDA has only approved it for prescription drugs and not in dietary supplements.

Why is CBD so interesting?

Many people claim CBD products produce the same medicinal benefits of cannabis without "getting high." Scientists are studying CBD for its role in easing several common health issues, including heart disease, cancer, anxiety, and more. In 2018 the FDA approved a CBD-based drug called Epidiolex to treat seizures and rare forms of epilepsy. Some teens use CBD as a homeopathic remedy for acne, pain relief, anxiety, and depression, and to boost productivity. Parents who give their children or teens CBD products should make sure that the product is THC-free or at least under the 0.3% threshold.

Is it legal to use CBD products in school?

Only a few districts have policies explicitly related to CBD oil. In addition, federal law supersedes state law when funding is involved. So even though marijuana is legal in Michigan (in limited amounts and under limited circumstances), it is still illegal under federal law. A person using a controlled substance in a school or any other building or business that receives federal funding could face criminal charges. In addition, a school or other entity that receives federal funding could risk losing that funding if it allows illegal products on site.

Since the status of CBD continues to evolve we recommend avoiding the use or possession of any CBD product in school without explicit permission from an authorized agent of the school.