Girl with autism allegedly struck in the face by bus aide; Police investigating

NEW LENOX, Ill. -- Police are investigating after an alarming video of a school bus aide hitting a 6-year-old girl with autism.

The girl’s parents say they are impressed with how the school district has handled the investigation and are hopeful charges will be brought against the aide.

Kayle Rushing was on her bus ride to Cherry Hill Elementary school in New Lenox last week and was allegedly struck in the face not once, but twice, by a frustrated school bus aide.

Kayle is non-verbal and couldn’t tell her parents what happened. They might never have known if not for a call from the superintendent of School District 122.

Alert staff members at Kayle’s school had seen her being carried off the bus and someone checked the video.

“It’s just mind-blowing just to watch the tape,” says Madeline Norley, Kayle’s mother. “I break down. I can’t even talk about it."

The bus aide works for a different district and is contracted to provide transportation. A spokesperson for Lincoln-Way Area Special Education District 843 told WGN News, “I cannot provide a specific comment at this time. There is an ongoing investigation regarding an incident that allegedly
occurred on a school bus.”

Kayle’s parents are glad this is being taken seriously but still shocked that this happened to their child.

“To have somebody hit my kid like that … it makes me mad,” says Nick Rushing, Kayle’s father. “And it’s heartbreaking."