Getting home from school is scary event for mother, daughter

Mom: "I though the worst. She’s only 5. We just moved here."
MCT Regional News
Jan 19, 2014

A mother of a kindergartner at Woodridge Primary School was sent into a panic Thursday when her 5-year-old daughter was not on her bus at the end of the school day.

“I though the worst. She’s only 5. We just moved here. The bus is new to her,” said Kristen Jones, whose daughter Aydryanna got off at Canyon Brook apartments instead of Timber Top apartments in Akron’s Merriman Valley. “I thought she might be walking home or got hit by a car.”

Jones immediately drove to the school to find her daughter.

Meanwhile, a Good Samaritan loaded the little girl onto another bus. The driver then phoned the school to let staff know the girl was safe and sound.

What happened to Aydryanna could happen to any young student. A child is lost in a group of students getting off a bus and the driver doesn’t notice.

“I don’t know why she got off there,” said Frank Margida, the transportation supervisor at Woodridge schools. “I’m not taking the blame away from the driver. We should know who gets on and off our buses ... I’m going to be calling that driver.”

Mother and daughter were eventually reunited, but the event raises questions about how to ensure little ones don’t get lost after school.

Margida said his drivers undergo periodic training. He tells his employees to get to know students by face and name. But large apartment complexes are areas of concern.

“We have a number of children getting off. We dedicate full buses to those areas,” Margida said.

One way to avoid confusion is to ask your child if he or she knows where to get off. If there is any concern, Margida said a name tag with the appropriate bus stop can help.

That’s how some teachers separate young children as they are loaded onto buses after school.

It’s something that might have helped Aydryanna, who was misplaced so close to home.

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By Doug Livingston - Akron Beacon Journal (MCT)

©2014 the Akron Beacon Journal (Akron, Ohio)

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