No reports of children ingesting any glass
School nurses and the district’s health services staff went into classrooms and asked students who had eaten the beans to tell them so they could monitor them for symptoms, but Tracy Lunoff, district supervisor for comprehensive health services, said it appears no child consumed the shards.
“To date, there has not been any report of any child being injured as a result of the incident,” Lunoff said. “The district acted immediately in response, effectively, and took appropriate action right away.” Parents of students who may have been affected were called, and the school sent an explanatory letter home the next day with students.
“With the amount of time that has passed, it’d be unlikely for a child to present with problems,” said Dr. Stephen Pont, a physician at Dell Children’s Medical Center and medical director of the school district’s student health services program.
Although sharp objects, such as glass, can cause cuts in the mouth, the esophagus, stomach or intestines, he said, “they generally pass through without much problem.”
On the same day the glass shards were found at Allison, a food server at Kocurek Elementary witnessed a glass piece fall out of a panel at her school. The glass panels are part of new serving counters that were installed at 18 schools this summer to replace old serving units.
Officials with the district and the manufacturer, Houston-based Moduserve, examined the units and found that the pieces came from around the joint where the metal bracket holds in the sneeze guard, Lunoff said.
New lunch serving lines were installed during the summer to replace aged units, including the ones at Allison and Kocurek.
“Once we determined the cause, we made the decision to remove all of them to reduce the chance of it occurring in any of the other 18 18 schools had glass panels, some of which were allegedly defective, installed this summer: Allison Elementary* Dawson Elementary Dobie Pre-K- 8th grades school Doss Elementary Jordan Elementary Kiker Elementary Kocurek Elementary* Langford Elementary odom Elementary Pleasant Hill Elementary Reilly Elementary Ridgetop Elementary sanchez Elementary sunset Valley Elementary
Walnut Creek Elementary Webb Middle school Widen Elementary Williams Elementary * schools where glass shards broke off source: Austin Independent school District