After fainting while allegedly playing with a Ouija board at school, 28 Colombian girls were brought to the hospital.
“There were 28 suspected incidents of worry in school children,” Hugo Torres, the head of the Galeras Educational Institution where it occurred, told the media.
The alarm was raised when the girls apparently experienced fainting, anxiety, and other symptoms at school. They were then taken to a municipal hospital, attended by their parents and school faculty.
The diagnoses of the pupils have not been revealed, but many parents blame the in-school use of Ouija boards, a device that uses a sliding pointer to spell out messages gained from the spirit realm and is typically used by a medium during a séance.
Ouija boards, invented in the United States in 1886, have become a staple in occult history due to their supposed ability to speak with the dead.
One mom who works at the hospital where the kids were taken said she saw three or four of them come in after fainting.
She said: “I work here in a hospital kiosk and every day I see three or four children arrive after fainting.
“Parents, you have to move, investigate what’s happening at school, because our children cannot continue in this situation.”
She added, “Our children always have a good breakfast and it cannot be said that what’s happening is due to lack of food.”
However, Torres has since accused community members of stoking hysteria by spreading unfounded rumors.
“Given the reported cases, a series of comments were unleashed on the community that, rather than helping to resolve the situation, led to confusion and an adverse environment for our work,” he said.
“The school is waiting for the medical diagnoses to provide further reliable information,” explained Torres, who implored the community to avoid making “early judgments and diagnoses of their own” in the interim.
Meanwhile, it isn’t the first time something like this happened in Colombia.
Just a few months ago, another group of teens collapsed following Ouija board use, with five being taken to the hospital.
It occurred at another school where 11 students, ages 13 to 17, fainted in a hallway and, according to the town’s mayor, were found “short of breath and thick drool was coming out of their mouths.”