Anchorage bus driver walks out

Posted: Friday, November 22, 2002

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Anchorage bus driver apparently reached the end of his rope before he reached the end of his route this week. School officials say the driver, whom they didn't identify, stopped his bus a couple stops before the end of the route Wednesday afternoon, got out, and walked away.

No children were harmed, but some struck out on their own and walked home from the busy Spenard intersection where the bus was parked, said North Star Elementary School principal Myrna Moulton. The driver ''was upset with some of the kids, some of the kids who weren't behaving,'' Moulton said.

The route had a new driver Thursday morning, according to Moulton.

The number of students who had to walk home Wednesday was not available. The last two bus stops of the route were relatively close, Moulton said.

Moulton found out about the situation when an upset parent called her. A second bus was sent out immediately to make sure all the kids got home, she said.

''I have a feeling there were some kids being real inappropriate,'' said Moulton, who was interviewing students to piece together what happened.

No matter what the children did, it doesn't excuse the actions of the bus driver, she said.

''The driver is the adult,'' Moulton said.

Bus drivers are trained to take misbehaving students back to the school, Moulton said. But when another driver did that last week, six East High School students jumped off, either through the front door or the emergency exit. One broke her arm, and several were disciplined.

Moulton said there could be disciplinary action against students who misbehaved Wednesday, such as recess detention and loss of bus privileges.

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