Six-year-old slips out of Alta Vista school unnoticed

An Ottawa mother is calling on the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board to provide answers, after her 6-year-old son slipped away from school during recess and walked home along Alta Vista Drive.

Zoha Abed said her son, who felt he was being bullied, grabbed his bag and decided to walk home all on his own from Riverview Alternative School on May 27th.

"I get a knock on the door and it's him in tears saying he hates school," she said. "At that point I just thought the best thing was to call the school, let them know that he's home safely. I did that and they were shocked as to how he did that on his own."

Abed said the school told her her son should have sought out a teacher if he felt he was being bullied and not just walk away.

Abed said she is not upset at the school, but that the OCDSB should look at reprioritizing the way it spends money to ensure the safety of children.

"For example, I know there is this EQAO test thing that the board funds and they spend so much, millions on that," she said. "So how about we use the funding for more safety and security measures? Are our children not valuable enough for us to increase some safety measures?"

It is only mandatory for teachers to take attendance at the beginning of the day and after lunch.

OCDSB trustee Mark Fisher called the incident concerning and told CFRA he thinks formal attendance should be mandatory following recess at the elementary level.

Abed said she is still waiting for the school board to provide her with answers as to how this could have happened.

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