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Marijuana & School Don’t Mix

Eden Beyene, Staff

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 Marijuana is sweeping the nation due recent legislation in favor of legalization. The state of Maryland, for example, is one of 29 states that has legalized medical marijuana so far. Illegal marijuana use has also increased; arrests for pot have jumped 34% from 2001 to 2010. With Maryland marijuana use on the rise, it makes sense that Catonsville High School will be affected.  

“Marijuana use is out of control, as far as my observations… That is a problem that’s greatly affecting our school,” guidance counselor Todd Pinson said. 

He believes there has been a higher rate of students attending school under the influence, and he condemns their use of the drug while in school due to how drugs affect students.  

In a study that had students take cognitive tests, cannabis users scored lower. Their memory and learning skills were lower than other students’. According to Mr. Pinson, drug use causes students to receive lower grades and skip classes.  

Being caught with marijuana also blemishes students’ school records with truancy and suspension cases, according to school social worker Christina Puglisi. Marijuana can even affect students emotionally. Ms. Puglisi has seen users become less motivated about their education. 

Some students, however, feel that marijuana does not have a huge negative impact.  

“I don’t think the people [who] use it are being negatively affected, because most people I know that come to school high still do their work. It makes them more creative,” said an anonymous source. 

This source has smoked marijuana and has felt more focused when doing school work high. As for truancy issues, the source believes students would skip with or without marijuana. 

But sophomore Sofia Brouse believes the drug does distract from the learning environment and has a negative impact on students. 

“I see a lot of people get in trouble for [marijuana]. I think that it kind of takes the focus off of school,” said Brouse. 

She has seen a student come into a lab, an environment where students have to be safe and vigilant, while high. This is just one of the many students she has seen come to class high. Brouse, Mr. Pinson, and the anonymous source all agree: students should not smoke before they come to or while they are at school. 

“I don’t think people should be coming to work under the influence. School [is] students’ work,” said Mr. Pinson. 

After consideration, the anonymous source agreed. 

“I guess school isn’t the right place [for marijuana], now that I think about it,” said the anonymous source. 

Although marijuana is becoming more apparent in CHS, it clearly does not belong. 

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The Student News Site of Catonsville High School.
Marijuana & School Don’t Mix