SILSBEE, Texas (KTHV) — The Silsbee Independent School District is investigating claims that a substitute school bus driver turned off the air conditioning and made students sweat during their ride home.
Kids claim she wouldn’t even let them roll down the windows on school bus 35.
Sara Pedder says the bus driver was punishing kids for acting rowdy on the ride home.
“My high schooler told me at some point, someone said something about rolling down the windows and she just kept saying, ‘you’re going to burn up until you shut up.’”
Pedder has five children that ride the bus. One in elementary, three in middle school and one in high school.
She says her kids came home from school on Tuesday, drenched in sweat.
One of her children suffers from eczema and had broken out in a red rash that was itching and burning.
It takes her children an hour to get home from school each day.
According to her children, the incident began when the elementary kids were being too loud on the bus.
“She said ‘everybody needs to sit down and be quiet, I know it’s hot in here but you can thank your little friends for that.’ They wouldn’t be quiet.”
Bus number 35 is one of 28 school buses with air conditioning. The district has 35 buses total, seven do not have AC.
A district spokesperson tells 12News there is no policy that keeps kids from rolling down the windows on buses that have AC.
Pedder’s children tell 12News, they have been threatened with being written up and possibly suspended from riding the bus if they roll down the windows without permission.
Parents say the substitute driver refused to let the kids open the windows.
“She just kept saying, ‘you’re going to burn up until you shut up.’ You need to sit, you need to sit.”
Pedder says she just wants the school district to address what happened and make sure something like this does not happen again.
“When we send our kids to school, we assume they are safe and right now, it’s questionable.”
According to Silsbee ISD the incident is under investigation. The superintendent and staff and reviewing the bus video. They tell 12News they take this claim very seriously.