Durham School Services Investigates Bus Driver After Students Left In The Cold - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/21/08

Durham School Services Investigates Bus Driver After Students Left In The Cold

Durham School Services is investigating why some elementary school students were dropped off at the wrong location. Frenship ISD contracts Durham to bus students to and from school. But after a wrong stop Thursday afternoon, two Crestview students are no longer riding the bus.

Every day after school Crestview Elementary Students Aliyah and Carla Salazar boarded bus route number eight. On Thursday afternoon the first and second graders got on the bus expecting to be dropped off at their babysitter's, as usual. "Carla told the bus driver you missed our stop," Virginia Salazar, the girls' mother said.

Salazar asked that we do not show her daughter's faces. She says the substitute bus driver would not listen to her kids when they claimed he had passed their stop. "My oldest informed him again you missed our bus stop and he's like it's OK just sit down," Salazar added.

Virginia received a call from the girls' babysitter when they did not arrive on time. "So I called Durham Transportation and asked where the bus driver is. You know my girls still have not been dropped off at the babysitter," Salazar said.

The girls should have been dropped off around 4 p.m. and walk a few blocks down to their babysitter's home. Instead, the bus driver dropped them about a mile and a half away at their home with the doors locked. "I got out of my truck and the girls were sitting here at the door curled up on their knees," Salazar said.

Virginia says her children were dropped off in the cold, dressed only in their pajamas, since it was pajama day at Crestview. "The general manager had the nerve to ask me why they can't just walk to the babysitters. Well the babysitter lives ten blocks away," Salazar added.

NewsChannel 11 asked Frenship ISD, "What are you going to do to ensure this doesn't happen again? Frenship ISD Spokesperson Linsae Snider said, "We're communicating with them and have been all day long. They are not our employees."

Durham School Services tells NewsChannel 11 the substitute bus driver has been with the company for five years and never had a problem. "It was an avoidable incident that shouldn't have happened," said Spokesperson Laura Oshcaski. "He should have used his radio and he didn't follow the proper procedure," Oshcaski added.

"Are your kids still riding the bus?" NewsChannel 11 asked Salazar. "No, they will no longer ride the bus," she replied.

Durham tells us they are still investigating the case. The bus driver is no longer on Aliyah and Carla's route. But the spokesperson says she does not know if he is still driving buses. Meanwhile Frenship ISD encourages parents to notify their school principal if they have safety concerns.

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