The Toronto Bus Driver Who Held Up Brampton School Kids Is The Real Victim
Yesterday, a Toronto radio station shared a story that sent parents of bussed kids over the edge. A bus driver, it seems, was over an hour late bringing mostly 7 and 8-year-olds home to their bus stop. The reason? The driver stopped not once, but twice en route home. Parents were PISSED. Justifiably so. Many didn't know where the kids were, why they were late or what the heck was going on. What parent wouldn’t be concerned?
Imagine their shock when the bus finally arrived and exhausted, tearful children showed up, some apparently having wet their pants, the wait on the bus being too long for young bladders.
Not a good scene. Parents called for the driver’s head on a platter.
As the story unravelled, though, the part about the poor kids wetting their pants notwithstanding, it became a lot more clear why the bus driver stopped, and my rubbernecking rage dissipated. I became a dissenting voice in the multiple discussions in groups on social media about what a horrible person this driver was; how she shouldn’t be around kids, should be fired immediately.
It appears the kids were being sh*ts, and she had had enough of the distraction, annoyance, and disrespect.
“A letter from the administration at Mount Royal Public School shared with NEWSTALK 1010 explains the driver stopped the bus for 20 minutes, refusing to proceed until the child passengers quieted down,” the radio station reported on their website. Seems reasonable to me. “After 20 minutes the driver pulled away and returned to the school. After speaking with the school's vice principal the driver set back out on the route and stopped the bus again before continuing on.”
Unfortunately for parents who don’t want to see the driver on their route anymore, the bus service said no can do; anyone who lives in the Greater Toronto Area knows the trials and tribulations the region has faced with bus drivers this year. There is a shortage. A serious shortage. So the driver, in this case, stays because otherwise, there is no driver at all.
Certainly, children wetting their pants is not okay. That would be humiliating and horrible and should not have happened. If my child was one of those children I would be enraged.
The bus wasn’t late because the driver was an evil woman who felt like making kids pee their pants. That it took THAT long for the kids to take her seriously, show respect, and calm the heck down so she could drive, speaks to the enormity of what that woman, and other bus drivers entrusted with carting our kids to and from school safely on a daily basis—on low paying wages and split shifts—deal with every day. How much do we expect them to have to put up with before they say ‘No more’?
I’d be upset if my child was on that bus. But I’d question the role they played because the precious snowflakes of those annoyed parents were likely contributors to the straw that broke the driver’s back.
If there is any fault to be had, it isn’t with the driver stopping. It is with the situation not being properly communicated to the parents. According to Global News, the school board said it sent a message to parents about the delay, but not everyone got the message.
It sucks the parents were inconvenienced and it sucks that they were scared. I feel for them there, I do. But beyond that? I actually want to give that driver a high five. That it took over an hour for the kids to just shut the heck up and let the driver drive speaks to the very reason she felt the need to do it in the first place.