A teacher is in hot water for misleading a schoolgirl into eating cockroach poison-laced “cookies.”
The incident began in an Osaka high school, when a 53-year-old teacher was asked by a female pupil what the “dumplings” placed on the staffroom floor were.
The teacher jokingly responded that they were “teacher’s special cookies” and then turned her attention elsewhere.
The pupil spotted more of the “cookies” on a desk and promptly proceeded to munch one, saying it was “nasty.”
They were in fact “dumplings” made with flour and boric acid for the purpose of killing cockroaches.
The pupil was immediately taken to hospital where her stomach was pumped. She is said to be recuperating.
The principal explained why his school was infested with cockroaches:
“With the summer heat the cockroaches had become abnormally active, so a teacher bought some boric acid from a pharmacist and made dumplings from them.”
The principal errs on the side of caution and blames the teacher:
“It might have worked as joke in a previous era, but now many students don’t know about these boric acid cakes. I’ve warned the teacher about her careless remarks.”
Boric acid is commonly used as a relatively safe insecticide – it is however still considered highly toxic and is fatal to humans in large doses. Small doses cause vomiting and diarrhoea, with the possibility of a variety of unpleasant long-term effects.