Emergency responders were called to a Volusia County elementary school after several children ingested a white powder that turned out to be sugar.
Volusia County Sheriff's deputies said one student found a bag with tablets in it around 7a.m. on Friday. The student then stomped on the tablets and ingested a powder. Throughout the morning, up to six other boys and girls ingested the substance. A teacher saw one of the children ingest the powder around 1 p.m. and called the sheriff's department.
"It caused alarm, because the students didn't know what it was," said Bob Ouellette, principal of Osteen Elementary. "We didn't know what it was. Some of them tasted it and some of them sniffed it."
A crew specializing in hazardous materials was dispatched to the scene and tested the substance. Crews determined the powder was a sugar-based candy.
Ouellette said he spoke with the first boy who found the powder. Ouellette said the fourth-grader didn't say why he crushed the sugar-based candy, ingested it, and then gave it to the other children.
"We have a lot of questions right now," said Ouellette. "We're going to do a lot of talking with our teachers and our students."
Ouellette said once responders were called to the school, it took about 90 minutes to sort through the situation. He said the children involved will be disciplined.
Parents, who were picking up their children from the school on Friday afternoon, said they're relieved everyone reacted the way they did today.
"I'm kind of happy they responded that quickly they responded that quickly," said Liza Houghton. "They cordoned off the area. They're taking care of the situation. They don't seem to be worried about it. They are investigating. They've got they're little science kit out."
Ouellette said he plans to send an alert to parents Friday evening about the situation.