An incident involving a Whitesboro Independent School District student has prompted the district to look into child safety.
A video circulating on Facebook shows a bus driver pulling away from a bus stop with a child is still standing at the top of the bus’ stairs. Whitesboro ISD Superintendent Ryan Harper said the district is aware of the incident and has responded by requiring all bus drivers to undertake additional safety training.
“We regret that this incident occurred,” Harper said. “Hopefully a heightened sense of our responsibilities will assist all our drivers, and staff, in continuing their daily work protecting our most valuable assets.”
Harper said the driver’s actions have been addressed but declined to comment on what, if any, disciplinary action had been taken.
“This incident happened on the afternoon of May 7,” Harper said. “The district was made aware on the morning of May 8. The driver has been addressed and all drivers received additional training on our safety protocol and procedures prior to their routes the afternoon of the eighth.”
The child’s father, Gerald Manzanares, shot the video three days after he said he had seen similar incidents. He said he sent the video to the district before posting it to social media.
“We have had issues with him in the past,” Manzanares said of the bus driver. “Nothing seems to get done, so I utilized what I had at my disposal to get (something) done about it.”
Manzanares said his daughter hasn’t complained of injuries but he said she suffers from a condition that makes her prone to injury. He also said she had been injured in an incident previously involving the same bus driver.
Manzanares said his daughter is now being required to sit in the front seat when she gets on the bus. He said she feels like she is being punished.
Harper said the child is not being punished and that the district had taken the action to correct the issue.
“We obviously violated our own safety protocols and these have been addressed and corrected,” Harper said.