A Houston mom says she's "furious" a school nurse sent her first-grade son back to class after suffering a concussion and broken orbital bones, ABC 13 reported.
Jamal Cloman was playing football during recess at Bonham Elementary School in Houston when he ran into a pole. Teachers realized Jamal was hurt and sent him to the school nurse.
Jamal "looked fine, there was nothing wrong with him," the school nurse said, claims Samantha Edward, Jamal's mother. "She gave him an ice pack" and sent him back to class, Edward claims.
But Jamal's teacher realized the little boy was seriously injured, and sent him back to the nurse's office, ABC 13 reports. That's when the school made the decision to call Edward.
"I was scared and I was crying, I thought my child is going to pass away," Edward told ABC 13. "His eye was swollen and it was black and blue. He was out it and slurring all of his words. He couldn't stay awake."
Edward says she drove her son to a hospital, and says doctors determined after an MRI scan that Jamal suffered a concussion and broken bones around his left eye.
Jamal is now enrolled in a new school, Edward told ABC 13.
The school district issued a statement saying the nurses acted in good faith and hadn't broken any rules. There was no indication the school nurses realized the boy had broken bones.
"A Bonham Elementary School nurse followed proper concussion protocol," the statement said. "The nurse conducted two concussion tests. After the second test, it was determined the student needed to be taken to the hospital."
Every year, about 300,000 students in U.S. high schools and colleges suffer concussions, according to a 2007 study published in the Journal of Athletic Training.
Data for elementary schools isn't available, but statistics from the Youth Sports Safety Alliance show almost half of U.S. schools "fall short of the federally recommended nurse-to-student ratio."