Colorado to use Marijuana Revenue on anti- bullying Programs

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on September 30, 2016.

The Colorado Department of Education has announced that the state will use the tax revenue from marijuana sales on bullying prevention initiatives in state schools. The schools will receive grants of up to $40,000 per year to help towards preventing the act of bullying.

Funds will be used to train school faculty with a prevention coach and form a bullying prevention committee made of teachers, staff, and parents. About $2.9 million of the estimated $66 million in surplus marijuana tax revenues will go towards the grants, which will be offered to roughly 50 schools throughout the state in the 2016-2017 academic year.

In Colorado, marijuana legalization came into force in January, 2014, allowing access to medical marijuana and limited recreational use. The voters of the state passed Proposition BB in November, 2015, which allowed the state to keep surplus funds instead of disbursing it back to residents and marijuana growers. It is reported that marijuana sales has reached a high of $117.4 million in June, 2016.

Dr. Adam Collins, bullying prevention coordinator for the Colorado Department of Education, said to media, “It’s a lot of money. It’s a great opportunity for schools to apply and make sure the social and emotional wellness of their students is taken care of.”

“It’s more than just teachers doing lessons,” Collins added. “It’s about changing the culture of the school so that it’s a warm environment. So it’s somewhere that bullying can’t thrive.”

The deadline for schools to apply for the grant is October 21. The state will announce the 50 winning schools on December 30 and then distribute the grant funds in January.

Though Colorado has strict legislation to check bullying problems, bullying incidents still occur as it happens in other states of the United States. Around 70.6 percent of young people nationwide admit to having seen bullying occur in their schools, according to Stop Bullying.

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