Cell phone video captures transgender student school bus seating dispute

SOUTH GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Cell phone video taken by a student captured a transgender student school bus seating dispute.

The video has been shared on social media and South Glens Falls Central School Distinct Superintendent Michael Patton has viewed it. He says the school will use this incident as a learning opportunity.

That argument erupted Wednesday on a South Glens Falls High School bus. It all began when the bus driver tells the students all boys sit on one side of the bus and all of the girls sit on the opposite side.

Next, the bus driver demanded that two students who identify as male and transgender move to the girl’s side of the bus.

One parent who did not want to be identified says her son was on that bus.

“The bus driver basically refused to leave until they moved to the girl’s side of the bus and they sat in basically a standoff.”

At the center of that standoff was another student who told the bus driver she would not sit down because he was discriminating against the two other students.

The standoff ended when the bus driver tells the students to get off the bus.

“The bus driver’s job is to get the kids home safe not to bring politics into the mix.”

Patton says the two students were kicked off the bus while the bus still sat at the high school. He says a school administrator immediately called their parents.

“There were opportunities during that discussion to change obviously his initial reaction but it didn’t happen,” Patton said.  “That’s really unfortunate, so again, we’re going to use this as a learning experience.”

Patton says it is not school policy to segregate students on buses by gender and says the bus driver was wrong.

“It’s new for public education to be working through these types of situations, but it’s something that we have to do a better job with.”

As for the student who stood up to the bus driver, she’s being praised for her bravery.

“Kudos to her,” Patton said. “That’s great that she did that and she deserves that kind of recognition.”

The school would not say if the bus driver faces any disciplinary action but Patton says discussions on that are underway.

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