Investigation of Bus Driver Still On-going

By: Erica Rakow Email
By: Erica Rakow Email

Panama City-- It appears it could be next week before we find out if a Bay District Schools bus driver will face any further discipline for dropping off a 5-year-old girl at the wrong bus stop, 5 miles from home.

Bay Schools Superintendent, Bill Husfelt has received the investigation report, but says he wants to speak with Jeannie Marie Burkett before making any decisions.

It was Burkett’s daughter, Adalyn, that boarded the wrong bus at Patterson Elementary School last week.

The child claims she told bus driver, Paul Miller, that she was at the wrong bus stop, but Miller told her to get off the bus.

Husfelt met with Miller last Thursday and suspended him with pay. Union rules prohibit Miller from being suspended without pay. Jeannie Marie Burkett wants Miller fired. But Husfelt says Miller may not be the only person who made a mistake.

"She got through that checkpoint and never should have gotten on the bus to begin with. But once she was on the bus, the bus driver should have recognized the tag that she was wearing and didn't belong on that bus. Now what happened once we got on the bus is where the investigation, you know, the bus driver said he doesn't remember telling her to get off the bus and the little girl says i was told to get off the bus," said Husfelt.

Husfelt says the entire episode was a terrible mistake that thankfully did not end in tragedy. Once Husfelt meets with Burkett, he says he'll hold a formal hearing, then recommend action which will have to be approved by the school board.

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