(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) — Three first graders at an Anchorage, Alaska, charter school were suspended last week after allegedly plotting to poison and kill a fellow classmate.
School officials said they found out about the alleged plan only after other students overheard them talking about it.
“We’re grateful that we had students come forward and share their concern,” said Ed Graff, Superintendent with the Anchorage School District.
According to police, the young girls planned to take silica gel preservation packets from their lunchtime food bags and put them into another student’s lunch.
The students were unaware that silica gel — a drying agent used to keep packaged goods fresh — is actually non-toxic, though the tiny beads could pose a choking hazard.
“We also will talk to students about where they learn this and do they recognize the seriousness of their comments and their actions,” said Graff.
Immediately following the incident last week, Winterberry Charter School sent parents a letter which included asking them to “connect with your child” and “talk about what it means to tell in order to be helpful.”
Officials said that while the alleged plot wasn’t carried out and no criminal charges were filed, it still left some parents alarmed.
“A resource officer spoke with each student involved as well as the victim and thoroughly went over with them the repercussions of this kind of stuff,” said Anchorage police spokeswoman Jennifer Castro.
“We really tried to give them the straight talk and the big picture of what this could have potentially turned into,” she added.
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