Autistic boy left on bus may have been asleep

Pupil of special school in Balrotherwas left on the bus as driver departed for depot

The Department of Education has said it is in contact with Bus Éireann and is investigating the incident.

The Department of Education has said it is in contact with Bus Éireann and is investigating the incident.

 

The principal of a school for children with special needs has said a seven-year-old boy with autism left on board a bus bringing him to the school may have fallen asleep. When the child failed to attend class, it was assumed he was sick.

The boy – a student of St Joseph’s Special School in Balrothery, Dublin – was picked up from his home on Tuesday morning but was left on the bus as the driver departed for the depot.

The bus transport system to and from the school is run by Bus Éireann on behalf of the Department of Education. The bus, which was carrying 11 children, the driver and a school bus escort, arrived at the school at 9am. Other staff then came to help the children to alight from the bus.

“It seems that a child had fallen asleep and when the bus was checked by our escort, they couldn’t see that there was anybody else on the bus,” the school’s principal Brendan Hennigan said of the school’s preliminary investigations.

The Department of Education has said it is in contact with Bus Éireann and is investigating the incident.