LAUSD meets with parents after students sickened by poisonous mushrooms

Wednesday, September 28, 2016
LAUSD meets with parents after students sickened by poisonous mushrooms
LAUSD officials meet with parents after students became ill by eating poisonous mushrooms from a school garden in Silver Lake.

SILVER LAKE, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Parents at Micheltorena Elementary School in Silver Lake met with school officials behind closed doors after students ate poisonous mushrooms last week while classes were making their regular trip to the community garden.

"Physically, mentally, it's been devastating. I'm just thinking of what could have happened," Ted Acosta, whose 10-year-old son Chris Acosta was one of the students hospitalized.

"I couldn't walk," Chris Acosta, a 5th grader at Micheltorena Elementary School, recalled. "I was just tired and everything from vomiting."

School officials told parents that a volunteer thought the mushroom - later identified as green-spored parasol, a common poisonous wild mushroom - was an edible part of the garden.

MORE: Toxic mushroom ID'd as cause of student illness at Silver Lake school

Seventeen students ate it and suffered various symptoms. Several of the students had severe reactions.

LAUSD wouldn't comment on camera about Tuesday's meeting with parents, but did issue a safety alert district wide as their investigation continues.

About 50 parents attended the meeting where officials said all the students affected were doing better.

"I want to make absolutely sure that this garden is not going away and the good news is in that meeting is there was the consensus that they wanted to keep the garden here. And now we're going to learn from it," parent Scott Hamilton Kennedy said.

Ted Acosta and his son said they understood the incident wasn't intentional and wanted the volunteer to know that he had their support.

MORE: Students at LA school sickened after eating garden mushrooms

They also said they wanted the garden to remain open, but with changes so something like this never happens again.

"The persons who will be working in the garden, they've got to have better training," Ted Acosta said.