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Father questions school’s responsibility after his son’s drowned in Jamaica Bay

Two 13 year old boys who skipped school last Friday and went to the beach instead, died after drowning in Jamaica Bay. The tragedy took place last Friday, 13 year old Daniel Persaud and his best friend Ryan Wong skipped the last day of school and joined a group of friends at Beach 121 in Broad Channel.  The 5 teenagers were seen by fishermen playing in and out of the water a little bit before noon. According to witnesses, Daniel and Ryan were standing on a sand bar when they got submerged in water.

The area is known to be dangerous and signs warn visitors not to swim in the water because of dangerous currents and sudden drop-offs. The two boys did not know how to swim and were swept away by the current. Their friends called 911 and a team of 9 rescuers were sent to the beach but it was too late. One of the boys was found pretty quickly and was still alive when rescuers pulled him out of the water. However he did not survive his injuries and died a few hours later.  it took rescuers another 45 minutes to find the body of the other boy. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.

The dad was already mourning his son when he received the school’s notification that his son was absent

Families of the two boys were in shock as they thought that their boys were safe at school. Rick Persaud, the dad of Daniel Persaud said he received a recorded message from the school that  his son had not show up in school only later during the day. He told CBS New York that if the school had called him at 10:00 am he would have been able to find out where his son was as he can track him through his phone.

The city requires schools to call the parents on the first day that a child is absent from school and to send a postcard on the second day. While schools can be held responsible if a child is injured or killed because of the negligence of a teacher or other supervising adult, parents are the ones responsible to make sure that their children are attending school.