Possible food poisoning caused student illness in Massachusetts

A student at Franklin County Tech School in Turner Falls, Massachusetts, reported being a victim of food poisoning from undercooked chicken served at the school in early February 2018. The student’s mother called the school the day after the student consumed the chicken, to report that the student became ill after eating undercooked baked chicken.

Food safety procedures require that meat products such as chicken be cooked to an appropriate temperature. The school stated that its logs showed the chicken was removed from the oven at a temperature of 170 degrees, which was slightly above the minimum required temperature.

Two students apparently became ill, although only one parent called the school to report the food poisoning. That parent’s student was vomiting, apparently as a result of having eaten the baked chicken the previous day. There has been no confirmed case of a foodborne illness at the school that has been verified by a medical professional.

While the Board of Health had performed routine inspections of the school’s kitchen operations in September and November of 2017, finding no issues related to the cooking of food products, they did find dusty freezer fans and unlabeled shepherd’s pie during their inspection.

After the call to the school about the student who claimed to be suffering from food poisoning, the Board of Health conducted another inspection of the school’s kitchen facilities and found no issues. In addition, the school has reviewed their kitchen policies to ensure that proper food safety procedures are being followed.

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