Schenectady City Schools Superintendent Larry Spring told WGRB 6News in Albany, N.Y., that a school bus driver shortage is to blame for recent incidents of young students being dropped off at wrong stops, or allowed to leave the bus without a parent or guardian present.
Several local parents have complained that the school district’s contracted bus drivers are allowing young students to get off the bus unaccompanied, which is violation of policy. A 4-year-old boy and a 6-year-old boy were recently found wandering the street by a passerby, who notified police.
The boys reportedly never came home from school, and their parents learned the driver not only let them off without their parents present but also at the wrong stop.
Spring said the district and the bus contractor, Brown Transportation Company, are working to fix the “unacceptable situation.”
Joe Rajczak, operations manager for Brown Transportation, explained that the aforementioned driver was new. Compounding matters was the fact that an aid, who was also new to the student’s school, placed the children on the wrong bus to begin with.
Rajczak added that new procedures in place have already resulted in a bus driver realizing a student had been placed on his bus by accident and was able to get the situation resolved quickly.