Lafayette

May 3, 2013 7:29 PM

First-graders given detention after student passes out pills

Some parents at Prairie Elementary in Lafayette are outraged because their children are being disciplined after another child gave them pills at school.

According to parents, a first grade student handed out green and blue capsules to at least eight other classmates.

Some students ate them, thinking they were candy. Others just dumped out the medication inside the capsule. One student alerted a teacher to what was going on.

All were given after-school detention.

Some of the parents refused the detention, saying their children were victims. Those parents say their children are now being threatened with suspensions.

One parent, Ariel Fields, decided to let her child serve the detention to learn a lesson.

"I don't think that it should be swept under the rug," Fields said. "This is a big deal, it's drugs at school."

Fields is upset, however, that her first-grade daughter got after-school detention for accepting what she thought was candy from another student

"My child didn't bring the medicine to school, she was given the medicine as if it was candy," Fields said.

Lafayette Parish Schools Director of Health and Wellness Bradley Cruice says in a situation like this... action is taken immediately.

"We would have to determine the circumstances surrounding,"" Cruice said. "Did the child know it was medication, or not? Was it mislead to believe it was candy or gum or those kind of things?
"There are consequences for those actions of bringing a medication on campus, as well as consuming a medication on a campus," Cruice concluded.

Fields doesn't think it's fair her daughter had the same punishment as the student who handed out the medication

"They get out of school at 2:45," Fields said. "She was to report to the office at 2:45 and stay there until 4 p.m."

According to Fields, her daughter was punished because she didn't warn a teacher

"I don't know if that is a procedure with the school," Fields said.

Cruice says after-school detention isn't just a punishment. It is intended to teach students what to do if anyone tries to give them candy or medication.

"Basically I feel like my baby is seven, first grade, and she's already been introduced to a lifestyle she knew nothing about," Fields said.

Today Fields had a note in her child's book bag, saying she was punished for "using and possessing controlled dangerous substances." She said she is worried this will stay in her seven-year-old's permanent record.

The parents we spoke to say they haven't been told what drugs their child took, but a school board source said it was some type of antacid. There have been no reports of any of the students getting sick.

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