PAULDING COUNTY, Ga. — Viral videos posted on TikTok shows some Paulding County elementary school students climbing out of the windows of a school bus at a busy intersection.
The Paulding County School District confirmed to Channel 2 Action News that a school bus driver has been suspended as police investigate a fight between parents and a substitute bus driver.
The dispute happened Wednesday afternoon at the Old Harris Road and Jimmy Lee Smith Parkway bus stop for Allgood Elementary students.
Viral videos on TikTok show some parents instructing their children to climb out the window. One parent can be seen banging on the door to get the bus driver to open it.
Channel 2′s Elizabeth Rawlins was in Paulding County Thursday, where she learned the students were from Allgood Elementary.
Another video shared with Channel 2 shows a parent slapping the bus driver in the face. The bus driver then sits down, shuts the door, and drives off with the kids.
In the video, students can be seen with their heads out of the window, and hear them screaming.
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Paulding County Schools said the regular driver called out sick that day, and a substitute driver was filling in.
The district said its drop-off process “broke down” as the driver tried to drop off the younger students.
“A backup resulted, and the situation soon escalated as parents waited at the stop for their students,” the district said in a statement.
Rawlings talked to Dallas Assistant Police Chief Bill Gorman, who said that when they arrived at the scene, they saw traffic backed up, a vehicle blocking a school bus and some upset parents.
Paulding County schools said the rest of the students arrived home safely with help from a supervisor.
Rawlings talked to parents, who said there definitely needed to be consequences.
“That’s so unsafe, and all of the traffic on 278 is rushing by at 60 mph,” one parent said. “That’s crazy.”
Dallas police confirmed it is handling the investigation. Police are asking anyone with information to email investigator Lt. Selleck at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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