9 elementary school students sickened by unknown substance at metro Atlanta school

Two metro Atlanta elementary school students were taken to the hospital and seven more were sickened after ingesting an unknown substance at school Wednesday.

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Channel 2′s Tom Regan was at Hollis Innovation Academy Wednesday, where there were at least two ambulances outside the school.

Paramedics at the scene said the students’ symptoms ranged from nausea to headaches and that all of the children involved were elementary-school-aged. Hollis is a school that serves children from Pre-K to 8th grade.

Many parents rushed to the school to pick up their children.


Regan talked to a mother who was taking her young daughter home.

“She was poisoned by someone here. We don’t know what the situation was,” she said. “It’s lack of supervision by the staff here.”

Atlanta Public Schools released a statement to Channel 2 Action News on Wednesday afternoon.

At approximately 12:30 p.m. today a number of students at Hollis Innovation Academy began to complain about stomach pains, dizziness, and nausea. School administrators began to investigate the situation immediately and discovered that a total of nine students in third grade had ingested a foreign liquid substance. EMTs were called and the school nurse continued to assess and monitor the condition of the students until the EMTs arrived. Two students were taken to the hospital and the others were released to their parents. The parents of all of the students who were involved in this incident have been notified, and a letter informing all Hollis parents of the incident was sent home with students.

The school administrative team followed all policies and procedures in regard to situations of this nature. They will continue to investigate this issue along with our Atlanta Public Schools Police.

Atlanta Public Schools representative

An 8-year-old girl Regan talked to said she was told another student put a liquid detergent on her fruit when she walked away from her table.

“She put it on my apple when I went to get water,” she said. “And when I cam back, I ate my apple and it didn’t taste right.”

None of the children were made seriously ill.

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