A sixth form student attached to Mae’s Secondary School died while receiving medical attention at a private city hospital on Thursday after she started to vomit profusely in her classroom.
The teen, 15-year-old Vanica Schultz of Tuschen, East Bank Essequibo, allegedly ingested several carbon tablets.
Guyana Times understands that the teenager was seen vomiting during the lunch recess and as such, teachers in the school were alerted. Eventually, the teen was placed in a vehicle and rushed to the hospital.
The Police were summoned to the educational facility and an investigation was launched.
Reports are the now dead teen was part of an investigation following the alleged discovery of ecstasy pills on the school premises some time ago. The students were instructed to inform their parents to visit the school so that the matter could be dealt with. This newspaper understands that following the decision to inform the parents, the now dead teen reportedly threatened to take her life, since she did not want her parents to know about her involvement in the ecstasy investigation. However, the school has since denied the incident. During a press briefing on Thursday afternoon, the school’s administration refuted claims that the teenager ingested ecstasy.
Director of the school’s secondary division, Paul Burnette also refuted claims that the drug, which was popularised at raves as a sensation-enhancing drug, was found on the school’s premises at any time. Schultz did not commit suicide owing to an investigation into the pills, he asserted.
In addition, Burnette denied reports, which suggested that the teachers delayed taking the child to the hospital. In fact, he added: “I immediately rushed with her, shouting to the teacher to get her car so that we can take her to the hospital…It didn’t take her 10 minutes to get to the hospital. I stood there…in awe as I saw them work on her, flushing her stomach and all of that,” he added.
The director also told the press that the now dead teen confessed to ingesting carbon tablets. The motive for taking her own life remains a mystery, but, according to Burnette, Schultz arrived at school as normal and distributed letters to her friends.
The letters, according to the school’s administration, revealed that the teen had apologised to her peers for the wrong things she had done in the past and encouraged them to continue performing well in school. The school reported that the student came through the primary section and was never a problem child.
Late last year, the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU) revealed a worrying trend of ecstasy being sold to students in at least five schools across Regions Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara) and Four (Demerara-Mahaica). The anti-drug enforcement agency is working with education officials to address the illegal practice.
Ecstasy is making its way into the nation’s schools after being already popular among many affluent members of society, CANU Deputy Head Lesley Ramlall had stated.
While it was not revealed if, or how many of these affluent individuals were charged, Ramlall said CANU was working to track down the drug mules and was not inclined to carry out full-fledged investigations in schools.