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A student at Central Special School in Edgewater died after choking at the school on Nov. 5, according to Anne Arundel County Public Schools officials.

Officials at the school called 911 after the incident and county Fire Department paramedics transported the boy to Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis. The student later died. School officials did not identify the student.

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School system spokesman Bob Mosier said the student was being supervised at the time of the accident. The number of staff members in a classroom is based on the needs of each child, he said.

The school system is investigating the incident, but Mosier said the priority is to offer support to family, students and staff.

“Our main focus has been to support the school and the family,” he said. “It is a traumatic event anytime we lose a child."

Central Special School provides services to children with and without disabilities from age 3 to 5, with half-day programs, and a full program for children with severe disabilities age 6 to 21, according to the school website.

In recent years, school principals have sent letters to the school community — and published them online —following incidents involving student fatalities.

Officials at Central Special did not send a letter and instead focused on conversations with parents and others within the school community, which is considered a common practice for schools like Central Special, Mosier said. The school website lists Natalie Marston as principal.

“Typically there are personal conversations with families that happen in schools like that,” Mosier said. “Because of the nature of the students in the building, the relationship between staff, parents and students is far different at Central.”

A county police spokesperson was unaware of the death.

The school website lists almost 50 teachers, educational specialists and teaching assistants.

“The community of Central Special is dedicated to providing a safe, positive and stimulating learning environment that enables individuals to achieve personal excellence,” the school vision statement reads.

Students are given an individualized instructional program consisting of developmental, academic, and/or functional skills. Among the goals are helping students function as independently as possible, prepare for life in the community and creating a safe environment.

It is one of a handful of county schools that provide programs for students with special needs. It is part of the special education department within county schools.

Children with disabilities from birth to age 21 may be eligible for special education. Federal law defines “children with disabilities” as including hearing, speech or sight impairment, traumatic brain injury, delayed development, emotional or intellectual disabilities, learning disabilities or other health impairments.

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