Special needs student walks away more than 1 mile from campus

- A special needs child walks away from school and his mother is now demanding answers. The 7-year-old BOY was supposed to stay at Meadows Elementary School once students were dismissed because he’s in the after school program, but his mother says he was left unsupervised and walked right out of the building. 

"The school had no idea,” says Rachel O'Reilly. She adds that she just happened to arrive home early, then heard banging at her front door. 

“I was a little taken aback by that and opened the door and there’s my son in a ball at the front door crying and shaking," explains O'Reilly. "He was sitting on the ground crying and shaking with his coat over his head.” She also says she rushed to Meadows Elementary to find out how her son could have been left unsupervised long enough to leave the building.

“The principal of the school accepts responsibility for what happened," says O'Reilly. "They messed up. They can’t tell me where he was. They can’t tell me how he got off the campus."  

Clayton is a student with special needs. 

"Clayton is high-functioning autistic," says O'Reilly. "He’s in normal classrooms."

O’Reilly has since learned that a resident called 911 after seeing a boy roaming alone and crying uncontrollably and the crossing guard saw a child walking, crying and upset and reported it to the school.

"It’s horribly upsetting," says O'Reilly. "I don’t feel my son is safe in an environment that I’m supposed to trust him to go five days a week. My 7-year-old special needs son walked a mile home by himself." 

Fort Bend Independent School District released the following statement: 

The safety of all students is Fort Bend ISD’s top priority, and all of our elementary schools have detailed dismissal procedures to ensure that students make it from their classrooms to their destinations safely. Still, on Thursday afternoon, a Meadows Elementary student left his designated dismissal group and exited the building. We are very thankful that he is safe.  We are also grateful that a crossing guard near our school noticed the student and contacted the front office so that our administration could immediately work to determine whether he left school appropriately. Within minutes, campus staff determined the child was not with his appropriate dismissal group, and the administration was in the process of contacting the parent when the parent arrived at school with the student.  Administrators at Meadows Elementary are reviewing dismissal procedures and reminding all students and staff about the importance of following them. In addition, campus administrators have already met with teachers regarding this particular student, and are committed to supporting him and his family upon his return to Meadows Elementary,
 

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