Officials: Aide drove students with suspended license

Posted: 02/01/13 at 4:30 pm EST      Last Updated: 02/01/13 at 4:44 pm EST

BOSTON (WHDH) -- A Boston school employee, who occasionally drove students, was caught driving with a suspended license.

Most students get on the typical yellow school buses, but sometimes teacher’s aides are pressed into service using school-leased vans.

Police said Gerard Grimes, a teacher’s aide at McKinley Preparatory High School, was using one of the vans after hours when he was stopped two times for drunk driving. He then lost his license.

Randolph police arrested Grimes last July. They said he told them he as on the way to a nightclub to party.

Milton police said Grimes told them he had just left the club when he was pulled over last November driving on a flat tire -- his second DUI in six months.

But he was still driving McKinley students in the same van.

Boston school officials said their regular bus drivers do undergo tight screening, but not the aides, who only drive occasionally.

In a statement, Carol Johnson, superintendent of Boston schools, said, “I'm outraged that these employees would violate the trust we have in them...Fortunately, no students were harmed in any way, but these allegations are serious and require a thorough investigation."

Grimes and another employee, whose license had lapsed, were both suspended with pay.

The superintendent said any employee who now drives the students will undergo the same kind of screening as the full-time drivers.

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