Mom upset after child gets on wrong bus at Guilford County elementary school

JAMESTOWN, N.C. -- A Guilford County mother said she was terrified when she could not find her 8-year-old daughter after the first day of school.

Stephanie Taylor's daughter, Adrianna, just started the third grade. After school, she was waiting by the phone for the call from her mother, saying her 8-year-old daughter got off the bus.

“Three o'clock came, and I called my mother because I still hadn’t gotten a call,” Taylor said.

Taylor said her mother then called her and told her the school bus came but Adrianna did not get off. She says she then called the transportation office, the school and even law enforcement.

Nearly an hour after Adrianna was supposed to get dropped off, Stephanie says the transportation office found her on the wrong bus.

“I’m just thankful. But I also just think something needs to happen to prevent that from happening,” she said.

The district's transportation director, Jeff Harris, says during the first days of school they try to learn from any mistakes.

“It’s always been a challenge on the first day, making sure the right students get on the correct bus,” he said.

Harris says they rely on the bus drivers to know the students and stick to the routes and they do a lot of training with drivers to help with that.

The district is also working on installing new bus tracking technology that will help prevent these situations.

“It’s an automated system that a student will scan a card when they get on the bus that will automatically tell the driver who the student is and where they are supposed to be,” Harris said.

They already have GPS tracking on around two-thirds of the district's 551 buses, but this will also allow parents to track where their child's bus is. This is in the beginning stages of being installed and will take a few months.

All in all, the district director of transportation said they did not have too many issues on the first day of school. He said they are also still trying to hire around 40 more bus drivers. More drivers will also help with any delays on the routes.