‘Very concerned’: Pouch with fentanyl found at Nanaimo school

'Very concerned': Pouch with fentanyl found at Nanaimo school
École Quarterway Elementary on Bowen Road in Nanaimo is pictured April 16, 2023.

The Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District says it’s working with police and addressing student safety after a pouch of fentanyl was found on the grounds of École Quarterway Elementary. 

In a letter to the school community, principal Arlette Begoum-Kaké says a student found the plastic pouch after school Friday and informed their parent immediately. 

“Suspecting that the substance could be drugs, the parent contacted authorities and arranged to have it tested. It was found to contain fentanyl, a potentially lethal drug if ingested,” Begoum-Kaké wrote in the letter sent out Sunday and obtained by CHEK News.

“Thankfully, the child and their family are fine, however, it is vitally important that we all follow proper safety measures when dealing with harmful substances.”

One parent at the school reached out to CHEK News and said they were “very concerned” by the incident, while another local took to Facebook to post photos of the pouch. According to the poster, the bag had a red dice pattern and was found in the school’s field along Bowen Road in Nanaimo.

“Probably enough to seriously harm or kill the child if the child tasted it,” they said.

Begoum-Kaké says school staff are working “closely” with the Nanaimo RCMP’s youth team, which is now investigating the incident. She says staff have also arranged for morning sweeps of school grounds to ensure everyone’s safety. 

“We take this matter very seriously, and the safety and well-being of our students and staff is our top priority,” she said.

The principal’s also reminding students to refrain from handling anything they suspect might be dangerous and instead tell an adult or call 911.

“We want to emphasize that student safety is of utmost importance, and we must all work together to ensure that our school remains a safe and welcoming environment for everyone,” she added.

Those with concerns or questions can call the school’s office at 250-745-8645.

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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