The bus driver and aide at the centre of allegations about mistreatment of a special needs child have been stood down and are longer driving students with special needs to and from school.
The ACT Government has also reminded a bus company contracted to transport children with special needs of its obligations to engage staff with the appropriate skills, training and expertise.
The outcomes follow a series of print, online and radio media reports into allegations one of the company’s drivers had asked a special needs child, 13-year-old Jay McMahon (pictured with mum Danielle), to put a pillow case over his head and go to sleep while on the bus.
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A spokesman for the ACT Education and Training Directorate said the transport company was contracted by the directorate to provide safe and secure transport of students and that the Directorate monitors this contract and responds to any concerns about the transport of students with a disability.
“The Directorate has been advised by the company that the driver and aide have been stood down and are no longer driving students with special needs to and from school,” he said.
“The Directorate has reminded the transport company of their obligation to engage staff with the appropriate skills, training and expertise to transport students with special needs.”
“The Directorate contacted the transport company after it was advised of the allegations to ensure they were immediately investigated. The Directorate has since also followed up with the family and the company about the allegations.
Jay’s mum Danielle McMahon was relieved after hearing conflicting reports earlier today suggesting the driver and aide, who she alleges called her son names and pushed him inappropriately, had been moved to different routes but were still transporting special needs kids in the ACT.
On hearing the news that both had been stood down she said she was glad they were off the bus and “away from our children”.
“Now for myself to help Jay overcome the trauma and anxiety from what happened,” she said.