Mother says daughter’s safety in jeopardy by school bus company

Posted: Updated:
Pine Bush -

A Pine Bush mother says an Orange County school bus company is jeopardizing the safety of her daughter.

Jamie McKnight is the mother to a 16-year-old who is blind, mute and suffers from a severe growth deficiency. The student, who is usually the only one on the bus, gets picked up from Pine Bush by the Birnie Bus Company and driven to her special-needs school an hour away in Ulster County.

She says she has concerns about the driver, and made an audio recording of what appears to be a man yelling at another driver.

"I'm concerned his actions and aggression behind the wheel is going to turn into something dangerous," McKnight told News 12

McKnight also gave News 12 a photo of what she says is an unexplained bruise on the girl's arm, and suggested it might have come during her bus ride.

McKnight says she notified the bus company and alleges she's been retaliated against since. She claims the girl's driver never showed up at school last month to take her home. She says she was alerted by a teacher that her child was still at the school.

McKnight isn't the first parent to come forward with concerns about Birnie Bus. Last November, another mother alleged her son and nephew were told to sit on the floor because of overcrowding.

Representatives for both the district and bus company say McKnight’s allegations have been investigated and determined to be unfounded. Both the Pine Bush School District and Birnie Bus Company say they were unaware of the bruise on the girl's arm and that they will investigate that latest allegation.

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