NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - A two-year-old child died Thursday while eating lunch at the Early Learning Center at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in Gentilly.
According to a news release issued by the school, the child lost consciousness after choking on food just after noon Thursday.
Efforts to resuscitate the child by members of the ELC staff and EMS responders were unsuccessful, according to the report.
NOBTS President Chuck Kelley said in the issued statement that the seminary community is saddened by the death and called on members of the immediate community, and the larger Southern Baptist community to pray for the child's family and all those affected by the death.
The seminary has mobilized grief counselors to speak with staff members, parents and children at the EL, according to the report.
The Early Learning Center at NOBTS is a Tier III licensed child care center through the Louisiana Department of Education and currently enrolls 76 children between the ages of six weeks and four years old. The preschool center opened in 1952 to provide a preschool setting for campus children and to offer a practical setting for training for students in the seminary's childhood religious education program. At the time the preschool was only available to the children of seminary students, faculty and staff. The center now cares for children from the surrounding community as well as those with a direct connection to the seminary.