Cape Town – Panic spread in Delft yesterday after 14 primary school pupils suffered sudden headaches and dizziness – some even experienced hallucinations – and were rushed to hospital by paramedics
It’s not clear yet what the cause of the symptoms was, with the provincial Education Department saying they were waiting to be updated by doctors.
According to pupils, one Grade 6 pupil had complained of a headache and dizziness before collapsing.
While teachers were attending to the pupil, 13 more children seemingly experienced the same symptoms.
About five medical vehicles had arrived at the school and transported pupils to the Delft Community Health Centre and the Symphony Way Community Day Centre.
Provincial Health Department spokesperson Mark van der Heever said the pupils displayed symptoms of anxiety, dizziness, hallucinating and shortness of breath.
One of them said all she remembered was feeling weak and struggling to breathe.
“It was around 10am when one of my classmates seemed like she was getting sick. She started shaking and fell down. When we looked at her, she was mumbling things we didn’t understand and she screamed.
“The teacher was afraid, so she asked others to carry her outside while she went to ask for help. A few minutes later, more pupils in class started doing strange things and others fainted,” said one pupil.
“Some jumped the fence while we waited until they opened. The principal didn’t want to tell us what happened.
“What makes us angry is that when they want money for donations, they send text messages, but today they didn’t. Other parents came around 2pm to find their children sitting outside.
“We demand a new principal because this is not the first time this has happened,” she said.
Provincial Education spokesperson Bronagh Hammond said it was not yet clear what exactly happened.
“Parents have come to the school to collect their children. We are appealing to the community to remain calm. Right now, our priority is to ensure that all learners are safe and that those needing medical attention are seen to.
“We await more information from medical professionals,” Hammond said.