STOW, Ohio (WOIO) – Schools in the city of Stow-Munroe Falls have launched a full investigation after a student said they were separated by race on the school bus.
The student’s mother tells 19 News that she is upset by the situation.
“I got a phone call from my kid and they said the bus driver separated the black kids from the white kids and put the black kids on the front of the bus and they couldn’t get together. sit in the back of the bus with the other white kids,” she said.
The mother said she immediately called the school and spoke with a receptionist and a supervisor. This official said her seat assignments had changed due to behavioral issues and she says they confirmed her fear.
“She said that by law we have the right to seat the kids wherever we want and I was basically saying, I’m a black parent, you’re telling me you have the right to seat the black kids at the before, separated from white children, that’s segregation,” she said.
The mother sent an email asking that the bus driver be placed on administrative leave while they look into the allegations.
The City of Stow-Munroe Falls Schools District confirmed to 19 News that it has launched a full investigation and is conducting interviews with the mother, students and bus drivers.
The district first learned of the incident via email from the mother, a spokeswoman told 19 News in a statement.
“The district first learned of a parent allegation that students were segregated on a bus based on race through an email sent at 9:45 p.m. last night. At 7 a.m. today, the District launched a full investigation, and since then the District has had several communications with the relative regarding his concerns and the status of the District’s investigation. Although this investigation is still ongoing, preliminary information collected so far shows students of different races scattered in seats throughout the bus. The district does not tolerate any form of discrimination or segregation and will take timely and appropriate action if these allegations are proven to be true.
The mother told 19 News she was working with administrators to get to the root of this terrible turn of events and now fears retaliation for speaking out.
“I want there to be change. They talk in their vision statement about everyone being equal and there being opportunities for everyone and everyone being treated and feeling the same and that’s what I want for my child “, she said.
There is surveillance video on the school bus and 19 News has asked the district to release it.
This is a developing story. Return to 19 News for updates.
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