A middle school teacher in New Jersey is facing charges after overdosing on fentanyl in front of his students.
According to the Westfield Police Department, Frank Thompson, 57, an art teacher at Roosevelt Intermediate School, was discovered unconscious and unresponsive in a second-floor classroom after 9:00 a.m. on November 29 by a school resource.
Students noticed Thompson was in distress before the officer arrived, and a school nurse was treating him.
Thompson was experiencing signs of a drug overdose, so the officer administered naloxone hydrochloride, also known as Narcan, which he carries with him. The teacher then began to show signs of progress.
Investigators discovered fentanyl and other drug paraphernalia in the classroom closet after the incident.
Thompson was charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and endangering the welfare of children on Thursday, according to police.
The classroom was sealed off and sanitized while classes were relocated, according to Fox 5, citing a letter from the school to parents. Simultaneously, a former teacher was brought in to ensure the continuity of the lessons.
The Westfield Police Department stated in a statement that all of its officers and school resource officers are equipped with Narcan and will use it to treat suspected drug overdose victims 13 times in 2022.
According to the CDC, nearly 107,000 Americans died as a result of a drug overdose in 2021.