After one mum spoke up about her 3-year-old daughter being left alone for hours on end as she was forgotten on the school bus, many other parents with similar experiences reached out to share their story.
Chen and Benjamine Truman told Lovin Malta that the same thing happened to their 3-year-old son two weeks ago. He was on his way to Verdala in the morning and didn’t get off the bus.
His mum only realised her son was missing when the school contacted her to ask if he would be coming to school that day. “I then personally called the bus driver who ran back to the bus to find my son crying inside.”
“The bus driver, also from the Coop Transport, didn’t check the bus and parked it with my son in it,” Chen said. “It was 30 degrees outside and he was on a bus locked for over an hour. They almost killed my son yet they claim it’s not their fault.”
The couple filed a complaint with Coop Transport and are considering legal action. In response, the driver was moved to another route.
The school has acknowledged their responsibility and has taken steps to ensure this won’t happen again, “however the Coop has refused to take any accountability for their clear negligence and has simply moved the bus driver to another route.”
Benjamine said that Coop doesn’t think they didn’t do anything wrong. “But they did everything wrong. You sign a legal document saying they are responsible. We signed, and we have the legal document.”
Elaine Mangion experienced a similar situation when her daughter fell asleep in the van and no one woke her up when they arrived at school. “The driver went to pick up other students when my daughter frightenedly asked him to take her to her school. She was lucky that it happened in the morning.”
The mum of another three-year-old, Ruth Seychell, said her daughter goes to an independent school with the free government transport scheme. “The morning van never has any supervision. She is almost four, but it has been like that since kindergarten.”
Another worried parent mentioned that there was supposed to be an app for the parents to track their children’s journey. “What happened to this service?” he asked.
Amanda Abdilla Padovani Ginies, the mum of a five-year-old boy, had it happen to her son as well. “I got to know from the Klabb 3-16 coordinator that my son arrived 45 minutes late with a stranger, and no one from school bothered to inform me.”
“The school’s janitor had to personally take my son to Klabb 3-16 without me knowing what was going on.”
Mary Micallef doesn’t share most parents’ concerns, as the same happened to her nephew. In her opinion, it’s not too bad. “If the child sleeps and he can’t be seen by the driver, these things can happen.”
It appears many parents have experienced the same thing, as concerns are raised about the lack of supervision and responsibility taken.
The government has launched an investigation into the incident after Lovin Malta’s first story.
Has this story affected you? Drop a message to [email protected] to speak out in confidence.