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Wareham Bus Driver Fired After Leaving Sleeping Child On Bus

By Beth Germano, WBZ-TV
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Hammond Elementary School in Wareham.

Hammond Elementary School in Wareham.

BOSTON (CBS) – A Wareham bus driver has been fired after leaving a sleeping kindergartner on the bus Tuesday morning. According to Superintendent Barry Rabinovitch, the child was not dropped off with other students at the Hammond Elementary School, but was left in the bus when it was taken to the driver’s house and parked for at least three hours.

Dr. Rabinovitch says the driver did not follow protocol which includes checking to make sure the bus is empty and then placing an “empty” sign on the rear door. The child was later dropped home on the mid-day bus route and told his parent what had occurred.

When the parent contacted the school, the superintendent says an investigation began. Part of the confusion, he says, was that the parent had contacted the school saying the child wouldn’t be in attendance that day. The school was unaware the family’s plans had changed.

Watch the Superintendent’s comments

He says all Wareham school principals are being told to institute a system to call the home of any absent child to prevent this from happening again. All bus drivers undergo mandatory safety training each year, including student check protocols.

The incident will be addressed during a training session next week with bus drivers. The superintendent apologized to the boy’s family during a school committee meeting Wednesday night.

“To the parent of the student involved we are extremely sorry this occurred, and we have taken the appropriate actions to try to prevent this from occurring again,” said Dr. Rabinovitch.

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