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June 04, 2012  |   Comments (10)   |   Post a comment

Bus driver, aide charged for leaving student on bus


OCEAN TOWNSHIP, N.J. — A 16-year-old student with special needs who was reported missing last month was later discovered locked in a school bus at the Ocean Township Board of Education transportation yard.

The teen’s mother reported him missing on May 4 after he did not return home from school in the afternoon. The bus driver, George Werman, told officers involved in the investigation that he dropped off the student at his residence at about 3:20 p.m. and observed him being supervised by another family member as he entered the home.

A follow-up investigation and search led to the teen being found inside the bus at the transportation yard by officer Kate Delanoy. It was estimated that he had been left unattended in the vehicle for about two hours and 45 minutes.

Werman and Robert Cronin, an aide who rides the bus, were arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child.  


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As a school bus driver and parent of 3 kids, school bus drivers should always do a child ckeck every time you drop at a destination. There is no excuse for this to happen, it is just plain lazyness and irresponsible.

Mickey    |    Mar 31, 2014 09:00 AM

I drive a bus, it is my job to walk that bus before and after every route. You can put a buzzer on the bus, but that's not going solve all the problems. They must look under seats and behind them. Its there job to walk that bus and not depend on a buzzer system.

Debbie    |    Feb 22, 2013 05:56 AM

I have been in the business for 30 plus years, drivers are required to do a walk threw from front to back each time they transport students. some of the newer vehicles have the tot minder. This should never happen at all anywhere. If the driver is responsible and they do what's required no students should be left. The bus aide also missed the boat... I would guess that there careers are over in transportation.....

Thomas Kurtz    |    Oct 26, 2012 03:45 AM

Really, this happened all because the bus may have not had a child check system in place???? What about professional responsibility? Not to mention the fact that there were two adults on this route. I suppose the aide thought he was being paid to just "ride along." JKramer seems to have lost touch with school bus transportation industry as a whole. The driver is RESPONSIBLE and should know that they assume FULL RESPONSIBILITY for the safety and well being of students they transport. When they cannot meet that commitment; then yes, expect the lynch mob, especially when jeapordizing the life of a child. Parents can live in their own hell if their loss is a result of their own blunder. School districts and bus companies have to assure the community that their child will be safe with the PROFESSIONAL STAFF that they employ to provide service.

Fiverays    |    Sep 05, 2012 12:13 PM

This would not happen if they had a child safety device in the back of bus, best thing our School Board ever did.This should be a must for all school buses.

Kathy Jarrell    |    Sep 05, 2012 11:12 AM

How can you not know there is still a student left on your bus? What happened to his post trip? It is just as much the drivers fault as the bus attendant. Why didn't the attendant verify that all the students were off the bus? How did the driver miss that students stop? It sounds like they were both preoccupied and instead of putting the students needs first they were only worried about themselves. On top of that it was a special needs student! I hope they never work with children again!

Shana    |    Jun 12, 2012 06:13 AM

This is absolutely the drivers fault! As a trainer and Director for Transporting Special needs students and clients, there is not room for error. And clearly this is a driver error. The school bus should be checked every time it's parked no exceptions. Both of these folks should loose their jobs before it's too late.

Dawn from CT    |    Jun 08, 2012 06:04 AM

As a busdriver myself, I don't understand how anyone can be in that much of a hurry to get off the bus without checking it. Our busses are equiped with a buzzer that has to be pushed in the back of the bus. It is drivers and monitors like this that give us a bad name. They should both loose their jobs - no questions asked

Harriet    |    Jun 05, 2012 03:34 PM

One of my grandchildren was left sleeping on a Head Start school bus. When we found out the bus was not equipped with a child check reminder device we did not raise hell about the driver, nor attack the driver's character. Since this is a well know issue in both the industry and with parents in private cars, we considered the provider neglectful, by not having installed an inexpensive working child/driver protective device. What shocks me is the reality that parents or grandparents (including a NASA rocket scientist) with just with just one child to keep track of in one seat behind the driver, can forget that child. These designated parent mistakes leads to many deaths every year, yet parents, grandparents and the like have excellent support from the vast majority of other parents and in the press to help them get though these actual tragedies. Happens some 5,000 times each year in our industry with no deaths, and seems all we have to offer our drivers is a lynch mob.

jkramer    |    Jun 04, 2012 03:08 PM

That's what happens when drivers and attendants are in such a hurry to put students off the bus they don't have time to go to the back to see if anyone is still on. Which they are required to do. Both of them should geat suspended at least. If if was their kid they would raise HELL.

Laura from Philly    |    Jun 04, 2012 01:01 PM

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