Local News

Fayetteville Mom Upset 4-Year-Old Daughter Left Alone At School Bus Stop

Posted August 29, 2003

— Leaving a 4-year-old home alone can land you in big trouble with the law. A Fayetteville mother cannot believe it is perfectly legal for a school bus driver to drop off a young child and drive away.

Every school day, baby sitter Jamara Brewington meets 4-year-old Alex Weaver at the bus stop. But on Monday, Brewington said she got caught in traffic and was not at the bus stop. The bus driver dropped off Weaver anyway.

"Alex was in between the white door and the screen door on the ground curled up in a ball crying," Brewington said.

When Kristina Weaver got home from work, she said she was devastated. Her daughter's bus stop is just walking distance from busy Raeford Road.

"She's 4 years old. For someone to leave a 4-year-old, I was pretty upset," Weaver said.

Weaver knows her baby sitter should have been there, but she was not. Weaver said she does not think a child in prekindergarten should be dropped off without someone to meet him or her.

School transportation leaders said all young children have a bus stop within two-tenths of a mile from their house. They also say it is the parents' responsibility to make sure the children get home and it is tough to make exceptions.

"When you deliver 26,000 kids home each day, there's no way we can assure there's a parent home to receive the child," said Philip Mullen, associate director of transportation.

Still, Weaver said she would like the rules changed and she will talk to whoever will listen.

"Any number of things could have happened. Thank God, they didn't," she said.

By law, only disabled children are required to be left with someone at the bus stop.

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