Jefferson City Schools: It won't happen again

Five-year-old Elijah Tubbs decided to leave early near the end of his first day of school. His teacher told the 23 kindergardeners that there were a couple of projects left for the day and to get their backpacks ready to go home.

Elijah decided that meant it was time to go home now. He left his classroom and school property without anyone noticing. After crossing two busy streets, he made it safely to his house where his mother, Megan Tubbs, was watching his two younger siblings.

Megan immediately called the school office and the school principal brought Elijah back to class.

I told them that my son is home from school," Megan Tubbs said. "I don TMt know how he got here. He had to have walked. Everybody realized that he was missing. He was gone for at least 20 minutes before they realized, whenever I called, that he was missing.

Jefferson City Public School Officials said they have no excuse for allowing Elijah to walk home alone early from his classes on the first day of school. School administrators said the teacher, lost track of the kindergartener.

Megan said she was more scared than angry when her son appeared at her front door all by himself.

Megan said Elijah knew how to walk home from school after doing it just one time for a back to school function.

East Elementary School Administrators made some changes since Elijah walked home early from school. For example, the door Elijah walked through has a bell to alert teachers and staff.

East Elementary School Administrators reminded all of their students and teachers about the proper procedures of leaving school property. District Officials said they are happy Elijah is safe and are certain that Elijah will never leave school property again unless someone is there to pick him up.

There was an oversight," Jefferson City Public Schools Spokesman David Luther said. "There are no excuses. You take a look at the situation and see if there is a way that we can do things better. The first thing that you do is that you make sure that your students and your staff understands what needs to take place.

The Tubbs family has accepted the Jefferson City Public School District TMs apology and has put this incident behind them.