Superintendent talks about student buying syringe from other stu - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

Superintendent talks about student buying syringe from other student

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NEWPORT, AR (KAIT)- An incident occurred Thursday at Newport Elementary School that involved a student buying a syringe from another student at school.

The syringe was handled by at least four students of different grade levels. Larry Bennett, the superintendent of Newport Schools, said disciplinary actions have been taken in this matter. But the parent of the child stuck feels not enough has been done.

"I wish the schools would take better precautions when it comes to issues like this and not just brush it underneath the table," said Jessie Osborne, parent of the student stuck. 

Osborne said she got a call from the school saying her son had been stuck by a needle.

"A kid had brought a needle from home to school and in the process of my son trying to get it from them and put the lid back onto it so nobody would get hurt, he got hurt," Osborne said. 

She said her physician told her there is no way of knowing if the syringe had been used without it being tested. So she took her child to Little Rock.

"He’s been tested for HIV and Hepatitis and in the end, he got put on Hepatitis and HIV prevention medicine and it’s making the baby really sick," she said. 

Bennett said no other students were hurt and he is asking parents to step in and monitor their kids. 

"We’re doing everything we can to make sure our schools are safe," Osborne said. "I would ask that parents if you would check backpacks and things like that before you send your child to school.”

Bennett said the syringe was passed around to about 4 different students before a teacher saw it and took it away.

"We do try to monitor our students very appropriately and as often as we can," he said

Bennett said the school knows which student brought the syringe from home and disciplinary action has been taken.

"All three have been disciplined by school rules and the last young man who actually stuck himself will also be disciplined for possession of an illegal piece of equipment of paraphernalia,”Bennett said.

Osborne disagrees with the school’s decision and said her child will never attend another Newport school.

"It’s not satisfying me that my child is also going to be disciplined for this." she said. "It could have been something really serious and some kid could have really, truly got hurt.”

Bennett said safety is the school’s number one priority

“New surveillance cameras are going to be installed over the summer, upgraded equipment and things like that so safety is high on our list," he said.

Bennett said the needle did puncture the student's hand. The student is still recovering from the side effects of the medicine.

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