A school bus driver who shooed off a young student out of his vehicle has received a public apology. Though outraged parents initially demanded his resignation, detailed analysis of the incident has brought surprising facts to light that exonerated the bus driver.
A school bus driver in Canada faced suspension and subsequent dismissal from duty after an amateur video showed him forcing a young student to disembark. The original video, which isn’t quite clear, showed the bus driver flinging out a child’s bag off the bus. Though one might think it’s just some frustration, the driver actually forced the child to get off at least 10 blocks from his stop on May 25.
However, the Edmonton Catholic School Board has clarified that it was wrong when it called for the firing of a school bus driver. The surprising turnaround came after the company that employed the driver decided to conduct its own internal investigation into the matter that was about to extend into a full-blown scandal.
It seems the bus company had installed security cameras above the driver’s head in all its buses. These cameras, though offered monochrome video footage, recorded all the day’s events and stored it on a remote server. A recording of the particular day was retrieved and what it showed quickly proved why the driver was right in throwing the kid out of his bus.
Realizing it needed to protect the driver and let the community know why the driver acted the way he did, the company that employs the driver released the full video. The video clearly shows the student striking the bus driver with a duffel bag, stated board spokeswoman Lori Nagy.
“In light of the second video showing an assault on the driver, we realize we should not have requested the driver’s termination and have apologized to his employer, Cunningham Transportation Service, and will be apologizing to the driver as soon as we can reach him.”
Laura Doroshenko, operations manager for Cunningham Transport, the company in charge of ferrying the kids, believes the boy lashed out because he wanted to be left off the bus earlier. However, the bus driver knew that the boy’s stop was still a long way off and hence didn’t stop. Outraged, the boy must have hit the driver, stated Doroshenko.
School bus drivers are usually quite familiar with the routes and preferences of the students that board the bus. Though the driver has worked with the company for over four years, he had been on the route for just a couple of weeks before the incident happened.
[Image Credit: Spencer Platt / Getty Images]