Source: BY RUMMANA HUSSAIN, Chicago Sun Times (IL), April 30, 2008
Cathy and Richard Bedard worried that something was wrong on the bus that took two of their three special-needs children to school. So the Berwyn couple slipped a tape recorder in their 13-year-old daughter Tiffany’s backpack to investigate. They couldn’t believe their ears when they pushed play. Cathy Bedard threw up.
“F – - – ing little monster,” a man groused at 17-year-old Rick, who has Down syndrome. There were also jokes about tying kids to the roof of the bus, threats of breaking a child’s finger and chuckling when a disabled student was escorted to another seat in order to “irritate” a classmate.
…… The driver and a bus aide, Eugene Church, were suspended from driving students in the Morton School District 201, which hired First Student Inc. to transport eight disabled children to a special-needs school in Chicago.
But the district learned that the two men were allowed to work elsewhere following a six-week suspension after the Jan. 17 recording surfaced, so the district is reviewing its $1.5 million annual contract with First Student and will try to bid the contract out by the end of the school year, district spokesman Dan Proft said.