WESTPORT, Conn. – A Westport school bus driver is accused of talking about his sex life in front of the Coleytown Middle School students he transported to and from school Thursday. Although the driver has been removed from his position, parents criticized the way school officials handled the situation.
Despite complaints from students when they arrived at school that morning, the students were again “terrorized” by the driver on the return trip home, because he was not pulled from duty, Roberta Farrell told the Board of Education on Monday night.
“Our children were forced to listen to the driver's guidance on sexual activity, as well as information about his own sexual experiences,” Farrell said. “This type of escalation should have warranted the immediate temporary removal of that driver pending a full investigation.
“The only action taken that day by Sandra Evangelista [the district’s transportation coordinator] was a call to Dattco [the bus company] to inform them. No parents were notified, and no requests were made to remove the driver.”
As a result, several students got off the bus before their stops and many others got off the bus in tears, Farrell said.
Eileen Ludy told the board that her son left the bus in tears. She, too, blames district administrators for failing to take immediate action.
“We should empower school principals to pull drivers off the bus,” Moody said. “If she [Principal Kris Szabo] had been empowered, she would have yanked that bus driver. She assumed he was not driving that bus on the way home."
Another parent said he hopes the district makes sure the man never drives a school bus again, anywhere — not just in Westport.
In response, Superintendent Elliott Landon assured parents that the driver was no longer behind the wheel of any Westport school bus and said the incident was being fully investigated.
“When the investigation is complete, we will take whatever action may be necessary to ensure that such an incident is not allowed to happen again,” Landon said.