|Leroy High School, Leroy, NY|
A news story that I have been following for close to a month now, comes from a town about an hour away from me where 15 students (and now one adult) have been mysteriously afflicted with tics that are so bad that at least two female students have been pulled out of school and are now being home schooled.
What amazes me about this is that no one seems to agree as to what is causing the illness. The students have been checked by various doctors and the theories and diagnoses abound: Tourette-syndrome, PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections), and Conversion Disorder. However, no one knows for sure.
Is it something in the water? In the 1970's there was a railroad spill of toxic chemicals: dumping a ton of cyanide crystals and gallons of Trichloroethene, or TCE’s. Even as I write this, more testing of the ground and water around the area continues.
Late last week, Erin Brockovich and Dr. Drew Pinsky sent in a team to do their own investigation. However, they were escorted off of school property because the school complained it was disrupting the school's activities having the team there with a film crew.
Rightly so, parents are angered and frustrated because there has been no definitive explanation as to why these children have come down with the tics. At a meeting, parents asked these questions:
— Why are just girls affected, especially when statistically such symptoms appear in boys at a 4-1 ratio? Young would say only that “it is unique.
— Why aren’t girls in lower grades exhibiting similar symptoms? Young said, statistically speaking, younger children should be showing symptoms. Tics occur in anywhere from 4 to 24 percent of children.
— What is the common denominator among the 12 (now 15) affected girls/(students)? Young would not say whether there was any.
— Why haven’t the parents of the affected children been brought together to discuss the situation and alleged diagnoses? Young said the medical concerns of parents should be discussed with their private practitioners.
The school continually says that it is safe and nothing is there that would harm the students. This may be true, but there is some "thing" going on in that township that has lead to this. It's too bizarre to think that all these cases are NOT related.
As more information comes in, I'll will update.
Thanks for reading.