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CHP to Students: Your Classmates are Dead... Just Kidding!

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On Monday, California Highway Patrol officers announced that several students at El Camino High in Oceanside had died over the weekend because of drunk-driver incidents. In fact, so many fell victim, 26 in all, some students thought there might have been a gang shooting. Tears, screams and all the emotions were heard throughout classrooms.

Then, at some point later in the day, came the "just kidding! Don't drink and drive, kids." Students were outraged, but some eventually realized the point. "You feel betrayed by your teachers and administrators, these people you trust," one student told KNBC. "But then I felt selfish for feeling that way, because, I mean, if it saves one life it's worth it."

It was all part of a program called Every 15 Minutes:

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Students chosen to symbolize the dead are pulled out of their classes by someone in a Grim Reaper costume while their obituaries are read aloud. A few hours later, they reappear in ghoulish makeup to enact a traffic accident at an assembly. Rescue workers whisk "victims" from a mangled car to a hospital or morgue. The "dead" then spend the night at a hotel isolated from friends and family before returning the next day for an assembly with parents and professional speakers. [KNBC]

However, instead of the grim reaper schtick, school officials opted to skip the histrionics and go for realism. Creators of the Every 15 Minutes program did not agree with the actions, but few complaints have been sent to the school.

Doesn't this all sound inspired by a certain South Park Episode?