Authorities Investigate After Child Wanders From Haverhill School During Recess

The first grader wandered from his elementary school and ended up at a waste treatment plant, according to the Department of Children and Families

State officials are investigating after a first-grade student wandered away from a Haverhill, Massachusetts elementary school and onto the property of a waste treatment plant during recess.

The Department of Children and Families said the brief disappearance happened on Oct. 21 after the boy left Bradford Elementary School’s playground through a section of fence that was downed by a tree.

Authorities said school staff members realized the student was missing during a head count at recess. He was initially thought to be in the bathroom but was not there when personnel went to check. 

As authorities were alerted, staff members searched the school and surrounding area on foot and by car, according to DCF.

Meanwhile, a neighbor contacted Haverhill police to report an unaccompanied child. The neighbor said they followed the child to a waste treatment plant, where an employee secured the boy until police arrived.

Police reported that the call from the neighbor came in at 1:28 p.m. and a 911 call from the school was made at 1:36 p.m.

The DCF said it was "reviewing the incident and revising protocols" to ensure students are safe at all times.

Contact Us