NEWPORT NEWS -- A Newport News teacher whose students have been charged with trying to poison her says she had no idea they were putting hand sanitizer in her tea.
Jane Miller, a teacher at Hines Middle School in Newport News, says she began to feel sick at the beginning of the school year.
"What it was, was my stomach would bother me. I was running a low-grade temperature. I was just exhausted by the time I got home. And putting it all together, the Germ X I was using was 60% alcohol, which equates to 130 proof, and I don't drink that much," said Miller.
Miller says she was shocked when two girls in her class told on the two boys who were later charged in the case.
"I was shocked and I couldn't quite process it fast enough to realize what it meant, but I knew immediately that I needed to send it to an administrator," said Miller.
Miller doesn't know the boys' intentions.
"Its hard to get into an adolescent's mind. The class I teach was math review, and a lot of them aren't too keen on math and they don't really want to be there," she said.
Miller says she wants to get the message out to parents to teach their children to respect their teacher.
"I think we need to appreciate our teachers more, and to understand it is a very difficult job, and to help children understand that teachers are there to help them," Miller said.
The 13-year-olds were charged on March 6th. Each faces a count of attempted poisoning, a Class 3 Felony.
Newport News school officials began an investigation when they learned about the situation. NNPS placed the students on long-term suspension before reassigning them to Enterprise Academy, an alternative school.