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Officials: Child found inside school van after not arriving home from class

By Web Staff

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    WHITEHALL, Pennsylvania (WTAE) — A child who did not come home after attending school on Monday was found inside a school van that had been returned to the bus yard at the end of its route, the Baldwin-Whitehall School District said.

The child had “mild dehydration” but was otherwise in good health, and the driver of the van has been put on leave during an investigation, according to the district’s statement.

The driver, identified as Robert Lutty Jr, of Pittsburgh, has been charged with one county of endangering the welfare of children.

On Monday, June 27, a Baldwin-Whitehall / Allegheny Intermediate Unit student did not come home after attending school at one of the AIU’s Preschool Early Intervention classrooms.

The students’ parents contacted police, who were able to safely locate the student inside the school transportation van that had been returned to the secured bus yard at the conclusion of the route.

Aside from mild dehydration, the student is in good health. They were immediately transported to Children’s Hospital for a wellness check before being reunited with their parents.

The safety of every Baldwin-Whitehall student is always our number one priority as a district.

There is no excuse for this incident as our policy mandates that all transportation vehicles are checked at the end of every route to ensure that all students have been returned home safely.

The driver of the vehicle has been placed on leave during the full investigation of this incident. The district will comply with law enforcement as necessary.

“Earlier this evening, administrators at the Allegheny Intermediate Unit (AIU) were alerted that a child attending one of its Preschool Early Intervention classrooms had not returned home after being placed on a school van after classes had ended for the day. AIU staff took immediate action to locate the child including contacting the police. Staff also provided comfort and support to the child’s family.

“We are relieved and thankful that the child was found quickly. The AIU would also like to extend its sincere appreciation to local law enforcement for its swift response to our call for aid.

“The AIU has already been in contact with the school district that provided transportation for this student. They are investigating the matter.”

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