Photo: Frederic Larson, San Francisco Chronicle
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About two dozen students at a Berkeley elementary school reported feeling dizzy or faint following a Thursday morning choral performance, school officials said.
Authorities have yet to pinpoint a cause of the Thursday disturbance in Malcolm X Elementary School’s auditorium. Paramedics evaluated the affected students, who had earlier performed in a choir performance, the Daily Cal reports.
Their vital signs were normal and none required transport to a hospital or medical facility, a Berkeley Unified School District spokesperson said in a statement.
Later in the day, a second wave of students, as well as a teacher and student teacher, reported experiencing similar symptoms. The district estimates that about 50 people reported symptoms, with none requiring medical care or transport.
The Berkeley Fire Department and an environmental consultant conducted air monitoring and field screenings, including tests for methane, carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide and volatile organic compounds, but nothing was detected and oxygen levels were found to be normal.
The school’s milk-and-muffin breakfast was also ruled out as a possible cause.
Parents were informed of the strange illness and were permitted to pick up their children if they wished.
The school remained open Thursday and Friday, though the auditorium is temporarily closed for further assessment.
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This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/berkeley-elementary-malcolm-x-dizzy-auditorium-13781104.php.