Boy, 5, slips out of Dothan school, heads up busy highway

A utilities worker spotted the student, who was apparently headed home, and took him to safety.

Boy, 5, slips out of Dothan school, heads up busy highway
A Dothan boy left Highlands Elementary School without being noticed and was found walking along a busy road. (Source: Photo Dothan City Schools)

DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - An alert Dothan Utilities worker found a 5-year-old boy who had walked out of a school unnoticed and picked him up along a busy highway.

Sara Carlisle said her son, Elijah, had become nervous about a large crowd in the Highlands Elementary gymnasium, where she said he had been sent from the classroom unsupervised. In her Facebook post, Carlisle claimed the boy then walked out the front door of the school and ran up Alabama State Highway 605, also known as Brannon Stand Road.

She believes he was headed to his nearby home when the utilities worker saw him and took the student to a West Main Street business. Carlisle pick up her son soon afterward.

Dothan City Schools Superintendent Dr. Dennis Coe said school video has been reviewed and necessary steps have been taken to make sure this doesn’t happen again.

“It’s fortunate the child is safe and we certainly thank that worker who picked up the child,” said Coe, who has been on the job for less than a month.

Carlisle also thank the workers and others called during the incident.

“I am extremely thankful for the Angel who picked my sweet five year old Elijah up from the side of the road, the officers who quickly became best friends with Elijah, and the firefighters who ensured he had not suffered any injuries,” she wrote.

Carlisle, in her post, said she plans to remove her children from Dothan public schools.

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