FARMINGTON — Regional School Unit 9 bus drivers and staff have been retrained on safety protocol and procedures because a child was left unattended on a bus in November.

Superintendent Tina Meserve said the incident took place on Nov. 13, when classes were delayed two hours because of weather.

The bus driver, who Meserve would not identify, parked the bus at 11 a.m.

“The safety protocol is to check the bus,” Meserve said. “A device is taped to the back of the bus and triggered to show the bus has been checked.”

The driver did not follow protocol and the sleeping child was left on the bus, she said.

The child was marked absent, and the school did not phone parents to question the absence, Meserve said.

“When the driver returned to the bus a little less than two hours later, the child was calmly sitting in a seat,” she said. “The child was brought into the transportation office and the parents were called.”

The incident was reported and promptly investigated, Meserve said. She would not identify the school where the incident took place, citing the confidentiality of those involved.

“This was a serious safety violation that could have had serious consequences. Thankfully, it did not,” Meserve said.

All district bus drivers were retrained on safety protocols and the procedure for using the device during a drivers’ meeting in December, she said.

“We also reviewed the safety protocol with staff at the school level,” Meserve said.

She said the driver is still employed with the district.

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