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District 57 will meet to discuss bus driver DUI
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Published: 3/11/2010 8:09 PM | Updated: 3/11/2010 8:10 PM

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The Mount Prospect Elementary District 57 Board of Education will hold a special closed session at 6:30 p.m. Monday, March 15, followed by an open session with public comment at 7:30 p.m., at Lincoln Middle School, 700 W. Lincoln St., Mount Prospect.

Here is the district's statement from its Web site:

"Given the substantial press coverage of late, you are no doubt aware that Betty Burden was arrested on March 9th for operating one of our school buses under the influence of alcohol. Ms. Burden has been served with a notice that she will be recommended for termination at the Board of Education's March 18th meeting. She remains suspended without pay until the Board meeting.

"Regarding the recent coverage of this incident, we ask you to please understand that some of the published accounts have created an impression of our response to the incident that we believe is misleading. Within approximately fifteen minutes of receiving notification that Ms. Burden may not be fit to drive, our transportation director tracked down, intercepted and stopped the bus. Our director, unlike a police officer trained to identify intoxicated drivers, was not able to conclude Ms. Burden had been drinking or that she was intoxicated. Consequently, he allowed the bus to continue under his surveillance until the police could arrive to make a professional assessment of Ms. Burden's condition.

"We appreciate and understand that people wish the bus had never left the District, or that once it was stopped, it stayed stopped. We will be addressing these concerns as part of our investigation of this incident. We will also be reviewing all of our transportation training needs and procedures to determine what can be done to prevent an incident like this from ever happening again. Thank you for your patience and understanding."