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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The parents of a 5-year-old boy with special needs are outraged at the Oldham County school district, claiming it did not do enough to protect their son.
"We wish we would've never had to hear those words," said the boy’s father, Ken Kishman.
It’s a call he and his wife will never forget.
"That he's missing, that the school has no idea where he is."
Their special needs child, left alone on a hot school bus, for three hours on April 21.The school district didn’t realize he was there until the boy’s mom went to pick him up at school that afternoon.Kishman says his son was on the bus for four hours.
"We have a difficult time keeping him in a car seat long enough to make it to an appointment in Cincinnati,” said Kishman.“He has to have movement and input and for him to be strapped in that seat, that long, it's absolute torture for him."
Kishman says a temperature reading in the bus was nearly 90 degrees.
"We were shocked that no medical attention had been provided to him, no call to EMS, no school nurse, nothing."
His son was later treated for heat exposure and dehydration at Kosair Children’s Hospital.The school district, Kishman says, seemed more focused on damage control than the well-being of his child.
"He got medical attention because we got him medical attention, a police report was filed because we filed a police report.None of those things were done, and frankly we have higher expectations for our school system for any school system for that matter, when you trust them with the care of your child."
But beyond the physical, it's also emotionally scarring for the little boy who’s already had to see two psychologists.Before this incident, his dad said he loved getting on the school bus.
"He was with me the other day,” said Kishman, “and a school bus pulled up in our neighborhood.Instead of expressing how happy he was, and clapping and saying 'bus', you know, he's hiding his face and then glancing away and then looking to see if the bus is gone."
To the driver and monitor who've since resigned, Ken only has one question:"How can something like this, with two trained adults, how can something like this happen?"
Police are investigating the incident as well and have not said whether charges might be filed against the driver and monitor.
The school district would not comment on camera, but Oldham County Schools Superintendent Will Wells said, “our primary concern remains this young child's well-being. We empathize with the family and we look forward to continuing our conversation with the parents."
Kishman says his son still has not gone back to school and he’s not sure if he ever will be back in that district.The family still hasn’t decided whether to file a lawsuit, but they have hired an attorney.
To read a full statement from the child's family, click here.