Kindergarten student left at wrong bus stop
BY BOB RAKOW Correspondent August 30, 2011 11:12PM
Kadir Randle, five-years-old, shown here with his mother Chiqueta Harris Tuesday night August 30, 2011 in Park Forest, Illinois, was dropped off at the wrong location by a school bus. | Art Vassy~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 4, 2011 6:48PM
Five-year-old Kadir Randle’s first day of kindergarten was a traumatic one.
Randle was let off his school bus at the wrong stop in the Lioncrest subdivision in Richton Park on Tuesday afternoon. He later was found wandering the subdivision by the mother of another student at Illinois School.
“She found my son walking up and down the street,” said Randle’s mother, Chiqueta Harris.
Harris met the woman and was reunited with her son.
“His whole face was like he had seen a ghost. He just cried. He doesn’t want to go to school anymore,” Harris said.
Harris said she first became concerned when her son’s bus, which is scheduled to arrive at Euclid and Brighton lanes at 1:40 p.m., was 30 minutes late.
“I went to the location thinking he would be there,” Harris said.
She called the Matteson School District 162 transportation office to report that the bus was late. The woman who answered the phone assured her the bus would arrive and told Harris to calm down, she said.
A few moments later, Harris received a telephone call from Illinois School in Park Forest telling her that someone had found her son.
Students have a card on their backpacks that includes their name and the location of their bus stop.
Teachers are riding the buses for the first week of school to make sure students get off at the appropriate stop, said Brian Ali, the district’s associate superintendent.
“It never should have happened,” Ali said. “He got off at the first bus stop instead of the second bus stop.”
The second stop in the Lioncrest subdivision is located at Richton Road and Saint Ives, about one block from Randle’s stop, Ali said.
Ali said he spoke with Harris and assured her that “every precaution will be taken” to make sure children get off the bus at the appropriate stop.
The teachers on the bus should have made sure Randle got off at the right stop, Harris said.
“The teacher failed to follow their own protocols,” she said. “They let my son off at a whole different stop.”