As schools start, ‘misplaced’ kids are rare but taken seriously

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The first day of school is filled with all kinds of emotions for students and their parents — excitement, joy, uncertainty and sometimes a little fear.

That’s especially true deep down for parents who worry about their little ones getting to and from school safely. New buses, uncertain routes, strange streets and a variety of other factors add to occasional missteps.

In fact, it’s rare but ‘lost’ or ‘misplaced’ kids do happen each year on the first few days of school.

Wednesday was no different in Fayette County with school officials and sometimes fire crews stepping in to help in cases of students getting on the wrong bus or off at the wrong stop or even just not following mom and dad’s instructions about coming home after school.

One of the cases involved a 7-year-old girl in the Russell Cave area and another involved a 9-year-old boy in the Tates creek area.

Still another involved a 5-year-old kindergartener at Tates Creek Elementary. The child got on the right bus but apparently got off one stop before it was supposed to. A neighbor saw the child and suspected something might be amiss so she took the child back to the school where the parents were.

Some confusion followed but got worked out.

School officials said the bus tech didn’t recognize the child, also common thing at the start of school, and missed it getting off the bus at the wrong place. “We also are learning new faces and have new staff,” one educator said.

District administrators didn’t sweep the issues aside.

“We take very seriously our responsibility to deliver students safely to and from school, and as such, have developed detailed procedures to guide the dismissal and transportation process. There is no room for error when it comes to student safety and these situations were unacceptable. We are investigating each of these incidents to determine where a breakdown in our protocols may have occurred and will take all appropriate steps to prevent future issues of this kind,” said Fayette County Schools Spokesperson Lisa Deffendall.

In all the cases, the students were located quickly and returned to their families.

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