The parents of four year-old Jensen Hart have demanded a “proper apology” and complained to education chiefs after their son strolled out of his school unchallenged and walked half a mile home.
Teachers at Newington Community Primary School were oblivious to Jensen’s leaving and his father, Gary, claims that the first the school knew of his absence was when he telephoned them to say that his son had turned up at home.
Jensen had left the school by strolling out with some parents who had been dropping their children off for the afternoon session at the nursery. Each parent thought he was with one of the others. Once outside the school, in Ramsgate, Kent, one of the parents realised he was on his own when she saw him playing the street. He told the stranger where he lived and she walked him home.
Jensen’s father was amazed and shocked when he answered a knock on his door at about 1pm on Friday afternoon to see his four year-old standing with a complete stranger: “It was some lady we’d never seen before and she had Jensen with her, which shocked us completely. She said he was playing in the street. He told her where he lived and she brought him home.”
School Headteacher Cliff Stokes confirmed that Jensen had left the school premises with three parents who had being dropping their children at the Nursery: “All three walking out with Jensen looked at each other and thought he was with the other. When they realised he was on his own they were only 20 or 30 yards from the school. One came back to alert us and another followed him home.
“We knew within a matter of minutes. He was at no stage on his own. A parent from the school followed him and ensured the child’s safety until he got home. But we know it shouldn’t have happened. I phoned the parents immediately and explained the situation. The first thing I did was apologise.”
Mr Stokes said that the school has changed its procedures and now has two staff stationed on the school gate to quiz any child attempting to leave. Jensen is now back at school.