Saturday, May 22, 2010

Illinois school bus driver fired for bullying 4th grader with Asperger's


A school bus driver, celebrating her 57th birthday May 20, was fired by the Hillsboro R-III School District.

The driver was accused of bullying a fourth grader, Cameron Ritchey, who has Asperger's Syndrome, a disorder that prevents him from fully interacting with others.

The driver was called into a meeting at district headquarters, and was terminated, according to the school superintendent.

Melissa Ritchie says she first complained about the driver back in February, when her son said the driver had called him a loser. Ritchie thought the matter was solved, but last week, Cameron came home upset, after he says the driver lead other students on the bus calling him "kookoo".

Ritchie then complained again, and the next day, the driver told Cameron he was a "baby" for complaining to his mother about the taunts. Then, the driver told the other passengers on the bus to give Cameron the "silent treatment", not talking to him. The last episode was confirmed by another student on the bus, upset about the treatment Cameron was receiving.

That was the last straw for Ritchie, who called us to complain, after she felt the district didn't do enough to solve the problem.

Hours after the story aired on KSDK, the driver was fired.