BALTIMORE (WJZ)– It’s a parent’s worst nightmare. A school bus mix-up leaves a 4-year-old boy wandering the streets by himself. WJZ first broke this troubling story.

Now, Mike Hellgren investigates how it happened and what’s being done about it.

After promising swift and decisive action, Baltimore County Schools have disciplined three employees in connection with the incident.

There are calls for action after a school bus snafu that had Baltimore County school leaders under fire and apologizing.

“We’re sorry that little Pierre got on the wrong bus, and we’re going to do everything that we can to make sure that does not happen to another student again,” said Deputy Superintendent of Baltimore County Schools Dr. Renee Foose.

Pierre is the 4-year-old who attends Hernwood Elementary and had a nightmare ride home. He was placed on a bus when he doesn’t even ride one, then driven to and dropped off in a strange neighborhood where a woman found him in tears, called the school and got him reunited with his mom.

“I’m mortified that this could happen to a small child like that,” Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz said.

“There were safeguards in place before,” Foose said. “What happened was we had a breakdown in our process.”

So what are those safeguards? If a bus driver does not recognize a student, he’s returned to the school. The youngest students are tagged with their name, bus number and color codes. New students are always introduced to the bus driver and color codes separate car and bus riders.

“I do believe that this was an isolated incident and I’m confident that they’re going to review their policies and procedures to make sure this does not happen again,” Kamenetz said.

“As far as picking the kids up from school, if you send someone out like that, they’re very strict with that,” Karen Young, a parent, said. “They would not release those children unless a parent was there. And if it was someone other than a parent, they would have to show IDs. So this really surprised me. I think this was just a little fluke.”

Pierre’s mother, Kyra Cottie, told WJZ she wants her son out of Hernwood.

“He’s in their care, and nobody knew where he was,” she said.

Cottie also said she has a lot of questions and wants a meeting with the superintendent.

Citing privacy concerns, the school system has not released the names or titles of those disciplined.

Comments (11)
  1. PO PO PO says:

    I love it the principal wants the position and pay but no responsiblity for what goes on with the people under her

  2. robertryan says:

    This was never about the child. He was but a pawn. It was all about the unfit mother & convicted felon daddy Pierre Sr. & how much they can squeeze in publicity & $$ from some shyster attorney’s…..Hey, “Keep my new ride alive” @ Jiffy lube when they pull up in their new Chevy Yukon.

    1. common sense says:

      ignorance is not becoming. you know nothing of my cousin and his family. this is a well rounded family and this mistake has been rightfully blamed on the incompetence of the school, teachers, officials, and bus driver. Just as the article stated somebody dropped the ball and it wasn’t the parents. what you said is utterly ignorant and shows your level of education. Educated people do not make assinine assumptions educated people only speak on what they know or research what they do not know before forming an opinion or making a statement.

  3. DarylDee says:

    @robertyan You need to get a life, then a gun and Kill yourself…….

  4. ignorance not needed! says:

    Thanku Daryldee u said that very well! At the end of the day narrow minded ignorant people will always pull the race card! And all blk people are horrible unfit people who dnt deserve anything! Instead of looking at the story for what it really is n thinking wow how could this happen n how can we help fix this? But u always have one idiot without a brain to say something that doesn’t need to be said! People really to get a life and a heart n stop pulling the race card!

    1. robertryan says:

      Pulling the race card my aZZ. I’m just speaking the truth. Unmarried mom with the taxpayers raising her kid, the father a frug dealer, welfare no doubt. That’s the low class black way in Balto. No smarts no skills except to scam. The kid will grow up just like daddy.

  5. tim says:

    I agree with Robertryan

  6. family says:

    i want ppl to think b4 talking…. u don’t know my brother or his family so if I where you I would wacth what you say bout ppl and there childern. If you don’t have childern or a child you can’t speak. I want ppl to really think bout what they say.

  7. Leslie Douglass says:

    robertryan and tim, your both stupid!!!

  8. Sandy Rosenberger Ackerman says:

    I am very sorry this happened to him.. There is no excuse for the incident.. But could have been caused by a long chain of events, and somewhere down the chain there was a break, so to speak,could have been a substitute teacher.. But being a school bus driver for almost 30 years children of his age are walked to the bus or to meet a parent.. As far as I know anyway.. I have seen safety’s ( 5th graders) walk children to their bus.. The bus driver could have been a substitute and didn’t recognize any children on the bus.. Many things could have happened to lead up to this unfortunate event…

  9. Arianna Young says:

    Hey guys, Will be the U.S. far greater off keeping Syria’s Assad?

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