FALCONER, NY (WNY News Now) – For many students, the end of the school day is the best part. However, for one 11-year-old, it is now the scariest.
A student attending Fenner Elementary School was heading home after a day of learning, when she was struck by a car crossing the designated crosswalk to Falconer Street.
“She actually was crossing over East Avenue, right in front of the high school, where the front doors of the high school are, there’s a crosswalk crossing over East Avenue to the corner of Falconer Street,” explained the student’s mother, Nina Headen.
According to Headen, the school failed to notify the mother that Bella had been hit by a car.
“When I received the call that Bella had been hit by a car, it was actually my husband’s aunt who called me, she was there picking up her nephew, and I got to talk to I believe he’s the safety officer there and he had said that there wasn’t a crossing guard. I do know that since Falconer has put the light in on Main Street that there’s not a crossing guard there either,” said Headen.
After receiving the news, Headen rushed over to the school.
“It felt like the longest ten minute drive of my life, nobody was telling me how badly she was injured, nobody was telling me if this car hit her and ran over her, is she up and walking, is she conscious and coherent, there was literally nothing from ‘Bella got hit by a car and you need to get here’ and me getting there,” Headen said.
The student reportedly felt safe crossing the street. Now, the young girl is battling physical and emotional injuries.
“According to my daughter, the girl crossing the street with her, and her cousin who was standing on the other side of the street, they said that she looked before she crossed and felt like she had enough time to make it across the road,” Headen explained. “She very fortunately at this point all we’ve noticed is she got a scrape on her elbow, she got a scrape on her leg, and obviously she’s in some severe pain, she was hit by a car. As of right now, she’s afraid to walk to and from school.”
WNY News Now did reach out to the Falconer School District for comment, and Superintendent Steve Penhollow explained that precautionary measures are being upgraded and are in the process of meeting with the police department and Village Mayor to address safety concerns. In addition, the school safety department will be implementing a bike and pedestrian safety course to aid in teaching students to cross the street safely.
Superintendent Penhollow also explained that crossing guards are not able to be hired through the district, rather through the police department. A meeting between Ellicott Police, Mayor Jaroszynski, and the district will be held in the upcoming week to discuss safety concerns.