NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — School district officials here are investigating after a group of elementary school students opened the rear emergency door of a school bus and left mid-bus route on Friday, WAVY reports.

Michelle Price, a spokesperson for Newport News Public Schools, told the news source that there was an incident involving a bus transporting Saunders Elementary School students. During the afternoon route, the bus driver pulled over and parked the bus to address some students about their behavior, according to WAVY. While the bus was parked, some of the students opened the rear emergency door and left. Price added that the remaining students on the bus followed suit.

After the bus driver called for assistance, several transportation officials reported to the scene as well as many of the students’ family members, Price told the news source. Staff ensured that all of the students were accounted for. Many of the students were already with their families, Price added.

In an email sent to WAVY, Price said that “the safety of our students is our first priority” and that the district is “taking this incident very seriously.” She also said that an investigation is underway.

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