PHOTOS: Parents of girl found in school bus lot thank woman who found her; Jackson School District says it’s “Investigating this very serious incident thoroughly”

Ms. Lea (Shelly) Johnson, the Jackson bus driver who spotted the 6-year-old who woke up in an empty school bus parking lot on Monday evening, was thanked today by the parents of the girl.

Ms. Johnson was given a gift basket thanking her for her care and dedication in a frightening situation which could have resulted in tragedy.

The story was exclusively reported by The Lakewood Scoop.

Today, the Jackson School District Superintendent Nicole Pormilli said the district is investigating this very serious incident thoroughly.

“To have a child left alone in this way is something no parent should have to experience,’’ Pormilli said. “Our district procedures are designed to ensure this does not happen, and those procedures were not followed. We are investigating thoroughly to discover how this happened and to ensure it does not happen again.’’

The district says safety procedures include requiring each driver to inspect the bus after each run to make sure no students remain on the bus. Drivers receive training annually on this procedure. The district will be revisiting this training and also working to streamline the district’s after-hours communication structure to make it easier for parents to reach a staff member in the evening in case of an emergency.

Pormilli said she reached out to the student and her parents Monday evening after it was reported to listen to their concerns and check on the student.

“I was so relieved to hear the student was doing well, but it doesn’t change the fact that this is very serious and it should never have happened,’’ she said.

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  1. Thank you Miss Shelly! You are a hero!! We at Bais Tova and Bnos Bracha are so, so lucky to have you as our bus driver! Your care and concern for every child on your route….and beyond! Is amazing!! Thank you for everything you do!

  2. It’s a good idea for parents to wait at the bus stop for a 6 year old. This way they know when the bus arrived. Had they been waiting at the corner, this would have been avoided. I wait for my 8 year old every day and it’s not my oldest. In fact, it’s my youngest! BH everything worked out at the end and the child is safe.

    • how do you know the parents weren’t waiting??

      Dan lkaf zchus here and don’t accuse the parents. the bus was running an hour late! and This child is one of the last stops with a substitute driver who was skipping some stops altogether.,,,

  3. It’s very nice to wait for the bus outside… if you could. My kids bus comes to the corner a block away from my house, and I have 4 little kids in the house not very practical to bundle them up every day to wait outside in the cold, rain, etc.

    • “if you could” is not an option. If it’s a youngish child you must wait for them, certainly if the bus isn’t stopping in front of the house. It’s your responsibility as a parent.
      I’ve also had multiple young children at home, where it’s been very difficult to go to the bus stop. But as the parent it’s my job to figure it out and make it work.

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