Board recaps accident response

Published 11:17pm Tuesday, May 1, 2012

During its regularly scheduled meeting Monday, the Dallas County Board of Education gave their thoughts on last Monday’s school bus accident in Safford that claimed the life of 19-year-old Skyler Ace King.

School board attorney John Pilcher said the accident, which left two-dozen children sent to the emergency room for evaluation, was no fault of the bus driver or the system.

“We are in no way responsible for the wreck,” Pilcher said.

Board members praised the collaborative efforts of the bus driver, students, teachers and the superintendent of education, Dr. Fannie McKenzie, for making sure occupants on the bus were taken care of.

“They did a great job,” board president Roy Edwards said. “The kids laid down like they were supposed to … we’re sorry the young man lost his life.”

McKenzie said all procedures and regulations were followed that day.

“The bus must stop, and one thing, for example we’re making sure procedures are followed as they were on that day. One of the things, is making sure students exit the bus on what we call ‘door side.’ [The driver] did that,” McKenzie said. “We are also making sure we review procedures for dropping students off. They did it right.”

The students who were riding the bus that day were from Keith, Five Points and Salem elementary schools.

In a previous interview with the Times-Journal, McKenzie, who visited each child who was transported to Vaughan Regional Medical Center, said she is thankful to the first responders for their help.

“I cannot thank the first responders who were there so quickly enough,” McKenzie said. “They were there so quick and immediately began tending to the students.”

The board also encouraged parents to get involved by voicing their concerns at meetings or leaving suggestions in the designated ‘suggestion boxes.’

The next meeting will be held Monday, May 21 inside the Dallas County Courthouse Commission Chamber at 6 p.m.

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