Boy with autism attacked on bus, driver allegedly hid it from parents

- Two Commerce Township parents have lawyered up after a school bus driver failed to tell them how their son with autism was attacked on the bus.

"Anyone that knows me knows that my biggest concern is I won't be there to protect him, and I wasn't," said the boy's mother, Val McFarland.

The parents of 13-year-old Cal McFarland say they were there to meet him off the bus and found him injured.

"When he got off the bus he was screaming and running to get inside the house," Val said. "He turned and I saw his face and I saw the blood and it was puffy."

Cal is not able to speak for himself, and the bus driver said he hit his face on a window.

"The bus drivers did not mention that he had been assaulted. They simply said Cal hit his head on the window," Val said.

His parents say Cal hasn't been back to Walnut Creek Middle school since.

"He normally loves hugs. He's not hugging. He's not as happy as he was and he's not eating," she said.

His mother Val says she had trouble getting the video to see what had happened.

"Begged her and begged her to please let us see the video so that we knew because Cal can't tell us if he had a concussion, internal bleeding. He can't tell us. She said absolutely not, you'll have to wait until tomorrow. It's to protect the other two students," she said.

Walled Lake Consolidated schools and Dean Transportation announced Thursday the bus driver and aid have been placed on administrative leave. Cal's parents have hired an attorney and filed a police report.

"I hope that this never happens to another family," Val said.

Val's battle is just beginning in a war over transparency. She believes there is no reason parents shouldn't have access to live streaming video to see what happens on the bus - especially to protect the most vulnerable children, like Cal, who can't speak for themselves.

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