03/16/2012 03:29 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Normandie Elementary Cutting: 5th Grade Classroom Scandal (VIDEO)

Last week, at least one dozen 5th grade students at Normandie Avenue Elementary School in Los Angeles, Calif. intentionally mutilated themselves with the blades of their disassembled pencil sharpeners. The Los Angeles Unified School District confirmed the incident Thursday.

"I think it was something about the bullying," a classmate told CBS LA. "They got all crazy and started cutting themselves."

It is not clear if the students were victims of bullying or if this was done in protest.

A substitute teacher was present at the time of the mass-cutting, but not paying attention, reports LA Weekly. The former full-time teacher was transferred to Miramonte Elementary School after its entire staff was replaced in the wake of the sex abuse scandal, reports CBS LA.

At least one child was hospitalized. Twenty students were interviewed about the incident by the LAUSD. Below, one student involved in the cutting explains why he did it.