600 students evacuated from New Jersey school after unusual odor sickens teacher

PATERSON, New Jersey (WABC) -- At least 600 students were evacuated from an elementary school in New Jersey Thursday morning after a unusual odor sickened a teacher.

Paterson's director of public safety said the teacher was in the basement of Public School 10 around 9:30 a.m. when she began to feel lightheaded.

The fire department responded and used meters to check for dangerous gases.

They determine the odor was peppermint oil.

The students were taken to a nearby school and are safe.

The teacher is being evaluated at the hospital and is expected to be OK.

A Paterson Public Schools robocall was made to parents saying, "This morning an unusual odor was detected in one of the classrooms at Public School 10. On the recommendation of the Paterson Fire Department, all students at School 10 are being relocated to School 18. Lunch will be provided and instruction will continue. Additional security has been sent to School 10 to assist with the evacuation and ensure safe passage to School 18. All students are safe and Schools Superintendent Shafer, district facilities officials, and Passaic County health officials are on the scene. We will update you as information becomes available."

A follow-up robocall also went out around noon:

"This is a message from Paterson Public Schools to the parents of Public School 10 students. Students have been safely evacuated to School 18 where they will eat lunch at 12:30 p.m. After lunch, they will be transported by bus back to School 10. The Paterson Fire Chief has given an 'all-clear' at School 10. Conditions at School 10 are safe for staff and students to return to the building. All after school programs at School 10 will be held as scheduled."

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