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Blessed Trinity Ensures Safety of Students and Facility

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Contact:  Patricia M. Chivers    
Communications Director, Archdiocese of Atlanta      
(678) 480-6865
pchivers@archatl.com

Blessed Trinity Catholic High School Ensures Safety of Students and Facility

Roswell – On Monday, March 5, students in a science classroom at Blessed Trinity Catholic High School exhibited apparent signs of a skin rash and a few students experienced throat irritation.  Action was taken to care for the students in the clinic. In an abundance of caution, the Roswell Police Department and Fire Department were called for medical transport.  The remaining students were led from the building with Father Augustine Tran to the sports field outside and then to nearby St. Peter Chanel Catholic Church.  All pre-cautions were taken to ensure the safety of the students, faculty, and staff. Families were contacted and the students were released from school to the parents by mid-afternoon.

“We are most grateful to Roswell Fire Department, Roswell Police Department and Dekalb County Hazmat for their response to our call for assistance in caring for the students and for their professional handling of the investigation,” said Frank Moore, Principal of Blessed Trinity Catholic High School.  Seventeen students with symptoms of itching, any sign of a rash or throat irritation were examined and transported by ambulance to nearby hospitals.  School Chaplain, Father Kevin Peek, was at the hospital with the students. All of the students were released to their parents by 6:00 PM.

There were an additional thirty-three students who were in the science classroom during the day but who did not indicate any physical conditions of concern.  They were escorted to a separate building on campus for the afternoon for observation.

Diane Starkovich, Superintendent of Catholic Schools for the Archdiocese of Atlanta, quickly arrived on the school campus.  “The crisis management plan was in place and was properly followed by the faculty and staff of Blessed Trinity Catholic School,” Starkovich commented. “This ensured the proper care for the students experiencing symptoms and the safety of the students during the school evacuation.” 

Dekalb County HAZMAT investigated the classroom finding slight traces of a non-hazardous powder.  The school building was determined to be safe.  As an extra pre-caution, school Principal Moore contracted with a professional cleaning service specializing in environmental clean-up to thoroughly clean the classroom and prepare to re-open on Tuesday.