A first-grader at a Missouri grade school was fatally struck by his school bus yesterday after finishing the last day of class before Christmas break.
The six-year-old boy from Plattin, about 30 miles from St. Louis, had gotten off and crossed in front of the bus near the intersection of Oakland Hill and Oakland Manor in the Oakland Mobile Home Park neighborhood around 3.30 pm Tuesday.
The bus pulled away with other students on board, hitting the child, police said.
As of Wednesday morning, the child’s name has not been released.
The unidentified bus driver and any witnesses were being questioned, Trooper Scott Roettger of the Missouri Highway Patrol
On their last day of school before Christmas break on Tuesday, the 240 students of Plattin Primary school sang Christmas carols and held holiday parties in their classrooms, said Superintendent Clint Johnston.
‘This morning we were singing Christmas carols together,’ said Johnston, his voice breaking.
‘This is a bad day; it’s a bad day for our school, it’s a bad day for our community. We’re hurting.’
He said in a press conference Tuesday night that counseling would be made available for students and staff members starting Wednesday morning, even though the school will be closed for Christmas break. The superintendent also encouraged parents to talk to their children about the tragedy.
‘I think that it’s important that you start by letting them know you care about them, and you let them know it’s okay to hurt,’ he said.
‘We have to work together as a community to get through this situation.’
‘It’s going to be a tough Christmas season for a lot of people, and we’ll get through it. We’ll rise. We’ll pull together, but this is not the way anyone wants to ever have to experience a holiday break.