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Third grader left on school bus most of the day in Terre Haute

A Terre Town Elementary school student fell asleep on his school bus and was left there almost all day.

Posted: Sep 23, 2020 11:04 AM
Updated: Sep 23, 2020 11:08 AM

VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) -- It's a parent's biggest fear. thinking their child is safe going to school, then finding out that may not be the case. That's what happened for one Wabash Valley family Monday.

Robert, also known as Junior, is a third-grader at Terre Town Elementary in Vigo County. When I met him at a park on Tuesday he was happy, smiling, and full of energy, but Monday was a different story.

"I was scared," Robert said.

"He said he was crying sitting there," Kelly Lientz, his mother said.

That's because Monday, Robert didn't make it to school.

"I got left on the bus," he said.

"They got a hold of me. It was the director of transportation and he wanted to let us know about an issue that happened with one of the kids, that he had been left on the bus," Lientz said.

She said she got the call around 3:30 in the afternoon. Lientz said they were told Robert had fallen asleep on the bus that morning.

Remarkably, Lientz said Robert woke up, squeezed his way out the bus doors, and went outside. He was in an Arby's parking lot when a woman found him and called authorities.

Lientz said it's a call no parent wants to get.

"I'm just really, really, really upset about it," she said. "My kid could have been ran over, kidnapped, he could have overheated on the bus if it was any hotter."

Lientz said the director of transportation told them, the bus driver did not check the bus seats after dropping the kids off at school that morning.

She said it's just another thing to make her anxious about sending her kids to school.

"I don't even want to send him! None of them now," she said.

We did reach out to the Vigo County School Corporation. The corporation said they are aware of the incident. They are investigating what happened and said they will appropriately address the incident.

Meanwhile, the parents are calling for the bus driver to be fired.

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