School bus aide appears to hit child with autism in shocking video

School bus (stock photo).
School bus (stock photo).

Credit: Jonathan Macagba

Credit: Jonathan Macagba

The parents of an elementary school student with autism say they have obtained a video allegedly showing a school bus aide hitting their daughter across the face.

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"My blood boils," the girl's father, Nicholas Rushing, of New Lenox, Illinois, told WLS-TV. "I think about it, and it just makes me mad. She shouldn't have to go through that."

Rushing obtained the video which appears to show his 6-year-old daughter being hit across the face twice.

The girl’s parents said they found out about the incident when the superintendent of New Lenox School District 122 called them and showed them the video earlier this week.

“It just makes me want to cry, to be honest with you,” the girl’s mother, Madeline Norley, told the station. “As a mom, just seeing that, it’s disgusting.”

The couple said that because of their daughter’s autism, she is unable to speak in a way that would allow her to tell her parents that she had been hit.

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No charges have been filed.

The district’s superintendent emphasized Friday that the bus aide is not a district employee. She said the aide works for the district’s bus contractor, Lincoln Way Special Education District 843 in Frankfort.

“I cannot provide a specific comment at this time. There is an ongoing investigation of an incident that allegedly occurred on a student school bus,” said Sarah Rexroad, 843’s executive director.

The girl’s parents said all they ask is for bus aides to be properly trained to handle these types of situations.

“When she’s having that meltdown, she needs that space and be able to mellow it out herself. And she does it,” Rushing said.