In Harlem a school has recently shut down due to a three-year-old tragically dying. The child was allegedly given a grilled cheese sandwich, causing a significant problem. His parents say that he had a dairy allergy and that the school was fully aware of this. Since his allergy was severe, he ended up dying as a result.
The child was in pre-kindergarten and his name was Elijah Silvera. The incident occurred in Harlem at the Seventh Avenue Center for Family Services. After he started eating the sandwich, it did not take long for the child to experience anaphylactic shock. The child was taken to the hospital right away, but unfortunately, when he arrived, he was pronounced deal.
The reputation of the school is currently in jeopardy over this event. It came as a surprise on Wednesday when the New York City Department of Health decided to immediately shut down the school. They said that this decision was due to the school violating the health code, which includes not adequately supervising a child and not following the safety plan that was written to prevent incidences like this.
PIX11, a local news station in New York City, spoke to a friend of the Silvera family. This person said that the parents are absolutely devastated over the loss of their young child. Documentation supports that the school knew that the child had a very serious allergy to dairy products. The parents also put them on notice about this because they knew that even a small amount of dairy could have deadly consequences for the child.
The family has a GoFundMe set up for them and a friend of the family made a comment on the campaign about the situation. This person said that an adult at the school gave the child a grilled cheese sandwich even though they knew about the severe allergy and had sufficient documentation about it.
This family member further stated to PIX11 that the child’s mother was called when the incident occurred. No one has spoken about why an ambulance was not called for the child. His mother picked him up and took him to the hospital. This cost quite a bit of time because mom had to go to the school and then take her child to Harlem Hospital which was about 10 blocks away.
Unfortunately, by the time his mother got him to healthcare professionals, it was too late. The family is demanding to know what happened and if the school followed the proper protocols. They want to know if breakdowns in protocol happened and where.
The family says that they have a GoFundMe to raise money to have an independent autopsy performed so that they can get more answers about what happened.
More details will surely emerge as investigations into the situation learn more information. No matter what the truth ends up being, this is a truly heartbreaking story. A child who had not even had a chance to start living yet lost his life due to an incident that appears to have been preventable.