NORTH PHILADELPHIA - A mother is looking for answers after her special needs son went missing for two hours after he was dropped off at the wrong bus stop in North Philadelphia.
Shavonne Simmons said her 6-year-old son, Marcus, is now safe.
"It was a terrible experience. It was terrible but it was a happy ending though," she said.
Simmons says the school bus driver dropped off her special needs son at the wrong stop. No one could tell her where he was, and her heart dropped.
"Everything was going through my head. I am thinking funerals, I am thinking just the worst of the worst," she said.
Simmons says she called his school, J.H. Brown Elementary in North Philadelphia, and they assured her Marcus got on the bus.
She called Yellow Bird Bus Company and says they were clueless, rude and didn't seem to care that her child was missing.
She also had a conversation with the bus driver.
"I said that is unacceptable," Simmons said. "I said, 'You are responsible for lives. You can't just have a nonchalant policy that you get on when you get on and you get off when you get off."
Two hours after frantically searching, she got a call from police that her son had been spotted wandering alone not far from their apartment. A Good Samaritan spotted him and called 911.
We tried several times to reach someone at the Yellow Bird Bus Company but were told they had no comment.
The Philadelphia School District said student safety is a top priority and, in a statement, said in part, "Our Office of Transportation has been in touch with the family about the incident and we will continue to work with all our bus vendors, bus drivers and schools to ensure our students safe arrival after school."
Simmons is hoping her story is a wake- up call for parents, the district and bus drivers.
"Right now I would love for them to put some type of plan in place to better identify their passengers. There is no reason why a 6-year-old child should be on your bus and you don't know anything about him and he gets off and you have no idea," she said.
Simmons said her son will not be riding the bus again.
As for that Good Samaritan, Simmons said she does not know who that person is, but she wants to say 'thank you.'
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