School bus driver, 72, slaps out-of-control 6-year-old, draws praise, criminal charges

Categories: Crime
school bus.jpg
There's no eating, spitting, or corporal punishment on the bus.
Jane Brooks, 72, has been a bus driver in tiny Elmore, Minnesota, for 15 years. A couple of weeks ago, she was behind the wheel when a six-year-old went into meltdown-misbehavior mode.

SEE ALSO: David Gustafson, 66-year-old school bus driver, arrested after writing love letter to 15-year-old

The boy started kicking his fellow passengers. Brooks called the Blue Earth Area School District twice for help, and was told to put the kid in the front seat where she could keep a better eye on him. But that didn't straighten him out -- soon, the kid had turned around and was spitting on kids in the seat behind him.

Brooks lost her cool and ended up slapping the kid. And though many Elmore residents are in her corner, she now faces a misdemeanor assault charge and the possibility she could lose her jobs driving a bus and working at a local nursing home.

From FOX 9:
The six-year-old got a bloody nose, and the complaint states that Brooks told the other students on the bus, "Well, maybe that's what he needed."

"This is a very difficult case to decide what to do," he said. "I can sympathize with the need of the bus driver to maintain order and discipline. At the same time, you can't turn your back on a case where someone slaps a six-year-old in the face."

As word spread around town about what may have happened, many people were hesitant to go on camera because it's a small town where everyone knows one another. Most of the people sided with the bus driver, saying the boy was out of control.
The boy's mother isn't happy about her son's behavior, but thinks Brooks deserves the criminal charge.

"He's six. I don't care what he did. I don't condone his bad behavior at all, but he didn't deserve any of that," Melonie Schiefelbein told Fox. "They can side with her all they want. I don't think she deserves any praise. 'Oh, poor Jane.' No, she doesn't deserve that."


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34 comments
DJDeon
DJDeon

Maybe the kids mom needs a slap in the mouth to.

teri
teri

Perhaps this kids mommy never told her 6 yo barbarian not to spit on people. It takes a village, blah-blah-blah, and if that village should raise a hand to a child so what? Spare the rod, blah-blah-blah and you get little meglomaniacs that have no compassion for others. I know I was not hit as a child, and yet somehow I also knew not to spit on adults or anyone else for that matter. In conclusion, yeah, mom probably sheltered her young one from the word "no'.

Robert Richardson
Robert Richardson

Kids don't learn that they should behave from watching that display. They learn that hitting is an effective way to deal with their problems.

Robert Richardson
Robert Richardson

Are you people serious? He got off easy? The mother is to blame? Should've hit him harder? Really? I weep for all of your children. He's 6!!!! Kindergarden! Kindergarden aged kids barely, just barely are begining to grasp the difference between right and wrong. My 2nd child just started kindergarden and, while he's a great kid, he's having issues due to the length of the school day, no snacks, no nap, etc. This 6 year old kid could have been having a bad day. Maybe he skipped lunch because he was given some attrocious slop like we got when I was a kid. Maybe other kids were picking on him and he lost it. Maybe he had a headache. All of you people projecting the world's ills on this kid and mom based on one bad day should look in the mirror. Then you should check out the reports linking spanking/hitting kids with drug use, addiction, and unheathy adult relationships. Being six ain't easy folks. If this 72!!!! year old can't handle a group of kindergardeners without resorting to violence, perhaps she should retire and let someone more qualified handle it. Would you all feel the same way if the driver were a 35 year old man? She didn't spank this kid, she gave him a bloody nose! You people do realize there is a difference between punishment (detention, grounding, extra work, lost priveledges, etc) and ABUSE. This falls in the latter camp. Assume for a sec that this is your kid, nephew, brother, etc....is what he did really worth the pain (physical and emotional) and embarrassment? This type of thing sticks with people. Violence begets violence. seconds ago

denvercalled
denvercalled

Are these people serious? He got off easy? The mother is to blame? Should've hit him harder? Really? I weep for all of your children. He's 6!!!! Kindergarden! Kindergarden aged kids barely, just barely are begining to grasp the difference between right and wrong. My 2nd child just started kindergarden and, while he's a great kid, he's having issues due to the length of the school day, no snacks, no nap, etc. This 6 year old kid could have been having a bad day. Maybe he skipped lunch because he was given some attrocious slop like we got when I was a kid. Maybe other kids were picking on him and he lost it. Maybe he had a headache. All of you people projecting the world's ills on this kid and mom based on one bad day should look in the mirror. Then you should check out the reports linking spanking/hitting kids with drug use, addiction, and unheathy adult relationships. Being six ain't easy folks. If this 72!!!! year old can't handle a group of kindergardeners without resorting to violence, perhaps she should retire and let someone more qualified handle it. Would you all feel the same way if the driver were a 35 year old man? She didn't spank this kid, she gave him a bloody nose! You people do realize there is a difference between punishment (detention, grounding, extra work, lost priveledges, etc) and ABUSE. This falls in the latter camp. Assume for a sec that this is your kid, nephew, brother, etc....is what he did really worth the pain (physical and emotional) and embarrassment? This type of thing sticks with people. Violence begets violence.

paigetastic
paigetastic

I think her slapping the kid was definitely wrong.....I know she is from a different generation and probably didn't see it as a huge deal, or maybe it was normal and what she did when her kids acted as outrageous, but there is no reason that she should have had the instinct to slap the kid.  What she should have done was pull the bus over, call the school and say that there was no possible way for her to keep driving with this going on.  Then the police may have had to have been called and the kid would have been disciplined by the school, the parent would have been notified that her child was banned from the bus and then the mother would have had to deal with getting her crazy ass kid to school everyday.  You can't go around hitting kids in this day and age (not that you ever should) and get away with it.  No matter how shitty they are.

jagersont
jagersont

Slapping the face of a 6 y/o  is wrong, Was the 6 y/o behavior out of control, YES. What would of happened if an older child on this bus would have beat up the 6 y/o?

I am familiar with this area, this is a minumum 9 mile sbus ride, that age are from kindegarten through upper grades.

What bothers me if the bus driver did what she felt was neccesary to take control of the situation, little aggressive I agree.

How would you have wanted the bus driver to take control of this situation if this was your child? I would be upset at first but honestly beleive I would not hold the bus driver criminally responsible.

The BEA school district is at fault, they did not have a bus chaperone on this bus, the bus driver shoul dbe focused on driving / safety of the cargo, not managing the behavior on the bus. That should be done by another person.

BEA went cheap, and now the bus driver got "thrown under her own wheels"

Sad for all involved

keny1
keny1

I'm going to venture a guess that the mother of this child isn't exactly a stellar example of humankind herself.  Just a guess. 

Kieron
Kieron

From the mom's comments, I'd say maybe Jane should slap her for good measure.

Phil Gonzales
Phil Gonzales

Dude, how many people have ever become better people by having someone in authority hit them? No one. All it does it reinforce the notion that people in authority are not to be trusted. If this kid has behavior issues, then he needs help, but this isn't a "bratty kid." And, come on! Blood? If any ANY of your kids came home with a bloody nose given to them by a teacher or bus driver, there would be hell to pay from your end and you know it.

Krista Ostrom
Krista Ostrom

No he won't. He'll become even more angry and more violent. The prisons are full of very pissed off adults who were beaten as children. And let me be clear, I am not in any way advocating letting this child run around the bus terrorizing other kids, but having an adult hit him is not the solution.

Meg Nathan
Meg Nathan

@Phil...when said 6 year old is kicking, spitting and not listening to authority - you betcha! He'll think twice the next time he's told to sit down and be quiet and so will every other student who was on that bus!

Mike Ostroushko
Mike Ostroushko

just sayin, the majority of kids are fuckin brats these days. medications have become a replacement for parenting.

Mike Ostroushko
Mike Ostroushko

were kids that much worse off when it was alright to do so?

Phil Gonzales
Phil Gonzales

Wait a minute; are we seriously advocating for bloodying a six-year-old's nose? Seriously?

Pete Loskota
Pete Loskota

Bet that route will be smooth sailing from now on.

Krista Ostrom
Krista Ostrom

But how do we know that his behavior is unchecked? There isn't enough information provided in this story to be making all of the assumptions that are being made here. There are two separate issues here: 1.) This woman physically assaulted a 6 year old child, and that is absolutely not okay; and 2.) The child's behavior was not okay and needs to be stopped. Whether or not his parents are doing that, if this was an isolated incident or an ongoing problem, etc., etc., we don't know.

Loukia M. Janavaras
Loukia M. Janavaras

There is a problem here that most seem to be ignoring--the behavior of this kid toward his peers. This is the kind of behavior that leads to bullying down the road and much more serious issues like that if just left unchecked by parents and by the school.

Mare Anderson
Mare Anderson

Take the kid back to school and they never get to ride the bus again. Monitors on the bus too. This problem obviously needs a solution.

Christine Breitbarth Johnson
Christine Breitbarth Johnson

no matter who's to blame... slapping a child that is not yours... is absoluetly wrong! hitting is not the answer!

Melissa Peterson
Melissa Peterson

If this was my kid, is thank the bus driver. Kids need to know that they are NOT in charge. Face it, all of us. Would've suffered the same wrath if not worse for actions of much less magnitude. I took at yard stick to the arse several times in first grade, I'm not broken, but I learned how to respect my elders.

Crystal Dupri Hailey
Crystal Dupri Hailey

Take it from someone who came from an abusive home that wasnt abuse. Im sick of the people who think that a couple of swats on a kids bottom is abuse. Heah i think that the bus driver shouldnt have hit the kid only because u dont want to loose ur job over stupidity ignorance and poor parenting. Me personaly i would have went back to the school and droppd off the kid and if the mothers personilty is how it seems from what i read i probably would have told the parents of the kids where the boy stayed so they could have a talk with her themselves...

Krista Ostrom
Krista Ostrom

I don't see the mother as condoning her child's behavior. I see her as defending her child against an adult who assaulted him. I imagine she is dealing with the behavior on the part of her child, as she should, but I agree 100% that the bus driver was out of control and should be at the very least fired.

Leah Hofmann Campbell
Leah Hofmann Campbell

That's why I no longer drive bus, I wanted to slap the $hit out of several of those kids. ;)

Erniece Allen
Erniece Allen

I would not have slapped the kid..but I surely would have whipped his ass!!!...Bus drivers are not there to discipline kids..their job is to drive the bus safely..It’s the parent’s job to teach their kid how to act in public. Perhaps the mom should be the one getting slapped for unleashing a monster on to society!

Eric Shawn Smith
Eric Shawn Smith

I blame the parents in this case, but yeah I would have slapped that kid twice. Spitting on other kids? A bloody nose is letting that little piece of shit off easy.

Tana ReelectObama Weiss
Tana ReelectObama Weiss

He deserved it! Parents are WAYYY to worried about being friends with their kids today...what's up with that??

Missi Hill
Missi Hill

perhaps bus monitors to ride with bus drivers would help. dont condone the actions of the lil guy nor the bus driver

Becca Hudson
Becca Hudson

Who was the one out of control there? She gave the 6 year old a bloody nose. That's assault if you do it to an adult, and it's abusive when you do that to a child.

Lisha Ginn
Lisha Ginn

THAT IS WHY I HATE OTHER PEOPLES KIDS!

Lisha Ginn
Lisha Ginn

I don't care if he's 6 or 16! I woulda slapped him too.

Loukia M. Janavaras
Loukia M. Janavaras

After reading the mother's comment, it becomes clearer why her child is out of control in the first place.

teri
teri

 @denvercalled Um, didn't we all go through that in kindergarten? I know I went through a long day, no snacks, no nap etc...yet I never hit any authority figure. Kids these days do not recognize authority. I feel sad for our elderly not for our children. They will run this country and they are barbarians!

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