Autistic Student at Brooklyn School Chokes to Death: Officials - NBC New York

Autistic Student at Brooklyn School Chokes to Death: Officials

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    Authorities are investigating after a student choked at a school in Brooklyn Tuesday and died, education officials say. Checkey Beckford reports (Published Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014)

    Authorities are investigating after an autistic student choked at a school in Brooklyn Tuesday and died, education officials say.

    Dyasha Smith, 21, was eating when she choked at the School for International Studies on Baltic Street in Cobble Hill.

    She was taken to the hospital, where she died.

    Smith's mother said her daughter was severely autistic with the mental capacity of a 4-year-old child and was supposed to be under constant supervision.

    "She's not a child to be alone. She's a child, when she's eating, you have to either feed her or make sure she takes little by little," said Catherine Smith.

    Dyasha had not spoken since she was very young, her mother said. She's pressing for an official investigation into how Dyasha died and whether she was unsupervised.

    "I am deeply saddened to hear of this loss, and my heart goes out to the student's family and the entire school community," Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina said in a statement.

    Farina said guidance counselors would be on hand at the school.

    The Office of the Special Commissioner of Investigation was notified.


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