CAPE CORAL, Fla. — Lindsay Perkins said she started panicking when she realized her daughter hadn't come home at her normal time Tuesday evening. Lee County Schools says a substitute bus driver had the wrong bus route.
Students get dismissed at Calossa Middle School at 4:00 p.m., and Perkins said the bus usually drops her daughter Mya off at home around 4:45 p.m. She said she frantic when her daughter didn’t show up by 5:45 p.m.
“The unthinkable was going through my mind. Just a parent’s worst nightmare,” said Perkins.
She said she didn’t know the bus number her daughter was on. But even when she gave West Zone Transportation her daughter’s name and school, they still couldn’t tell her where she was located. She said they even gave her misinformation.
“The bus driver had told her they made the stop and my child was dropped off.,” she said. “I thought someone had taken her. At that point I didn’t know what to think. My next step was to call 9-1-1.”
Lee County Schools said a substitute bus driver was filling in. They said he accidentally took the wrong route and kept Mya safely on the bus until dropping her off at home.
Perkins said Mya tried telling the driver he had missed her stop but he told her he had to drop off the other kids before figuring out where to take her.
“She was frantic. She had tears in her eyes. She was scared and shaken,” said Perkins.
She added she can empathize with the driver but says there should be more accountability.
“At the end of the day when my child’s missing, and she is in the care of transportation, they should know where they’re going and some training should be put in place when that situation arises if it ever does again,” she said.
She Said West Zone Transportation told her to download the “Where’s the Bus” app, which she didn’t have at the time. Parents can go to leecountyschools.net and click on “Where’s the bus” set up to register children.