In a first, judge finds teacher’s Colorado high doesn’t count in Texas
After Maryam Roland, a public high school teacher in Ysleta, in El Paso, tested positive for marijuana use in 2015, the State Board for Educator Certification sought to suspend her license for two years. In her defense, Roland argued that because she’d smoked the pot during a vacation in Colorado, where the drug has been legal for recreational use since 2013, she had done nothing wrong.
Such explanations typically have not met with success, attorneys said. In an opinion released earlier this month, however, a Texas judge agreed with Roland, comparing punishing her for using pot in Colorado to penalizing someone after returning from a vacation in Las Vegas.
“Possession of a usable quantity of marijuana is a criminal offense in Texas, but so is gambling,” Administrative Law Judge William Newchurch wrote. But the court “would not recommend that the Board find a teacher unworthy to instruct in Texas because she legally gambled in Nevada.” Continue reading…