Boy leaves elementary school, no one notices

LANSING, Kan. - Thursday marks a week since a Leavenworth County fourth grader was able to walk away from his elementary school, and no one noticed for hours until his grandmother came last week to pick him up.

The boy's family said he left Lansing Elementary in the middle of the day and did the 15-minute walk alone. They're now concerned for his safety as well as for the other students who attend the school.

"How do you not know that there is a child missing, how is that ok--for them to assume that all their kids are in their place when they're not?" Cynthia Sparks, the boy’s aunt said.

Sparks said since the start of the school year, the boy has been a victim of bullying. The final straw came last Thursday at recess.

"He felt unsafe and walked out of the playground and went home. He felt scared and alone," Sparks said.

For hours, no one from the school knew the boy was gone.

In his journey home his aunt said the boy had to walk along Desoto Road, a long stretch of roadway that has no sidewalk.

There are also the dangers of strangers like in the abduction and murder of 10-year-old Hailey Owens.

"What would have had happened if that was him? I mean that's terrifying for me," Sparks said.

She hopes school administrators will take measures to combat and prevent bullying as well as keep track of their students.

"It's not that hard—if you can count, count your kids," Sparks said.

The school district denied 41 Action News’ request for an on-camera interview and said they have no comment regarding this particular incident. They do add that they are in the middle of installing surveillance cameras at Lansing Elementary.

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