A Broward school bus driver transporting middle school students from school made a slight error in judgment and missed the original stop by eight miles.
The driver left the students there anyway.
At least that's what their parents are saying. The Broward school district, however, is giving a slightly more detailed version of the events, saying that the kids forced the driver to let them out at the wrong stop and that the driver can't very well make them get back on the bus.
Apparently, the driver made an error in the route and stopped at the south side of Riverside Drive in Coral Springs instead of the north side, where the Forest Glen Middle School students he was transporting live.
The kids reportedly freaked out and got off the bus anyway.
The bus driver left and went about the regular route, leaving the seven students, ranging in age from 10 to 13, stranded.
And that's where things get hazy.
According to Broward school district spokeswoman Tracy Clark, the driver asked the students to get back on the bus, but they wouldn't listen.
"[The bus driver] couldn't force the students to get back on the bus," Clark said.
But at least one parent spoke out, saying he found scared children when he came to pick up his daughter two hours after she and her classmates were dropped off.
The students had gathered outside Broward Health Center North in Pompano Beach to wait for their parents to come get them.
The district says the driver told the students he'd get them back to their proper stop when he completed his route. But, the district says, the kids demanded to be let out there and then.
"[Monday's] incident was one of timing," said Clark. "It was a first-day error."
The parent with the daughter says that he was never notified by the district and that simply leaving kids in a strange place and driving off is "unacceptable."
This incident comes after last year's debacle with Broward school buses, when drivers were given route changes at the last minute and then accused of sabotage by Superintendent Robert Runcie, the incident spilling over into drivers' pointing fingers at the district.
Things have seemingly gotten better since that lunacy, but this latest incident proves there's still work to be done by both the Broward school district and the drivers.
If the driver misses a route, that's one thing. But there has to be a better system than "Oh, you live 12 blocks from here? Ah well." *Bus roars away as kid is left standing outside abandoned warehouse*
Keep New Times Broward-Palm Beach Free... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering South Florida with no paywalls.