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Harrah mother suing local school district following incident with bus driver

HARRAH, Okla. - A Harrah woman is suing the school district following an incident with a local school bus driver.

In 2014, an 8-year-old girl was supposed to be dropped off by her bus driver at an intersection along Britton Rd.

However, when he grandmother went to pick her up, she realized she wasn't there.

"We were trying to call frantically to find out if she had gotten on the bus and no one was answering the phone,” Merri Lee Harris, the girl’s grandmother, said.

It turns out the girl missed her stop and when the bus driver went back around to drop her off, the grandmother was at the school trying to find her.

"She told the bus driver, 'There's nobody here to get me. There's supposed to be somebody here,' but he still had her get off the bus,” Renee Parent said.

The little girl then started walking down Britton Rd. to go to her grandmother's house a mile away when a man stopped to offer her a ride.

"They finally coerced her into getting in the vehicle and he convinced her he would take her to my parents," Parent said.

Luckily, she got to her grandparents safely, but Renee thinks it could have turned out differently.

"It was horrible. I mean it was absolutely horrible. I mean she felt like she wasn't going to see us again that she chose to get in with this stranger,” Parent said.

She says her daughter has been seeing a counselor since the ordeal.

Now, Parent is suing Harrah Public Schools for negligence, saying she hopes more protocols are put into place, including better ways to communicate with the bus drivers.

"I'd like there to be a lot more safety protocols and ways to get a hold of the school and to get a hold of the bus. The bus didn't have a radio on it, and even if they had, nobody at the school would have answered,” Parent said.

Harrah Public Schools cannot comment on pending litigation.

However, the superintendent said the district works to make sure the children are safe.

"Harrah Public Schools released a takes every possible measure to ensure that every child is delivered safely to and from our schools.  Our district would not pick up/drop off a student at a bus stop that the district feels is unsafe,” Paul Blessington, Harrah Schools Superintendent said.

Parent pulled her daughter out of Harrah schools after the incident.

The trial is scheduled for October 9.