‘Had to get help’: SC bus driver commended by district for quick action during fight

When a chaotic brawl between students and parents broke out on a Chester County Schools’ bus last week, the driver took quick action to end the fight.

Driver Celestine Sanders diverted from her afternoon bus route, instead pulling up to the nearby sheriff’s office where she honked the horn to get the attention of deputies.

On Friday morning, school district leaders recognized Sanders for her swift, heroic actions that may have prevented the situation from getting worse.

RELATED: Fight involving parents, students on Chester County school bus leads to arrest, officials say

“I hereby formally commend Ms. Sanders for going above (her) official duties,” said Dr. Antwon Sutton, superintendent of the Chester County Schools District. “We thought it was important to recognize you for what you did to keep our students safe in this county.”

A district spokesperson said the fight broke out between students, but at a bus stop a parent boarded the bus and started fighting as well.

“Two students started fighting as Ms. Sanders pulled up to a bus stop. It was at this moment the parent of one of the students entered the vehicle, escalating the situation further,” Sutton said.

Sanders said she knew she had to act quick.

“The parent was on the bus, so when she didn’t get off when I asked her, I knew I had to get help,” she said on Friday.

Channel 9 reported on the fight involving parents and students the day it happened. One parent was charged after the incident, the sheriff’s office said.

Two students told reporter Glenn Counts they were on the bus when the fight escalated.

“I heard someone screaming in the back, so I looked back. Then I saw random girls jumping another girl, punching her,” Jayden Mondragon said.

ALSO READ: Mother says son was bullied when parents, students got into fight on CMS bus

In a video shared exclusively with Channel 9, a parent was seen boarding the bus to come to the aid of her child, who was involved in the fight. That’s when Hall and Mondragon say things escalated.

“It’s concerning ‘cause they could end up killing each other by the way they was fighting,” Hall said. “When that mama was hitting that girl, if she would have kept hitting her, she could have easily killed her.”

Reporter Tina Terry asked the district if they would benefit from adding a second adult to all buses.

“If we see that there’s some extreme situation, we’ll have to look at having someone temporarily, but there is no plan to have an adult on every single bus,” district officials said.

In the meantime, Sutton is hoping that other bus drivers will handle similar situations the way Sanders did.

(WATCH BELOW: Chesterfield Schools release video from inside bus during crash)