Missing students got on wrong bus

Published June 12, 2007


On the first day of Hillsborough's summer reading camps Monday, a first- and second-grader created an afternoon alarm when they did not arrive at the school bus stop where they were expected.

Turns out, they were on the wrong bus.

Within about five minutes, school officials sorted out the confusion via radio dispatches. Both students are taking summer school classes at Anderson Elementary, but attend Tinker Elementary at MacDill Air Force Base during the school year.

Following summer procedures, officials at Anderson sent the children home on a bus headed to Tinker, schools spokeswoman Linda Cobbe said.

The school did not realize that their parents wanted them dropped off at a different location in the afternoon.

"The message to parents: If you want to make alternative arrangements, please tell the school, " Cobbe said. "We don't want this to happen again."

The children were never alone or unsupervised.

Cobbe said such mixups happen often enough that they don't come as a surprise to schools. In fact, Hillsborough is looking into technology that could track every student when they get on and off buses, part of an overhaul of the transportation division.