Skip to content

Child spotted alone on highway, picked up by police after leaving school

A driver called the police when they saw the 5-year-old boy wandering on highway 16
A 5-year-old child wandered away from William Konkin Elementary School on May 15.

On May 15, 2024, at 1:00 p.m., the Burns Lake RCMP received a call advising that a five-year-old child was spotted, unaccompanied, near Hwy 16 at 5th Avenue.

Police located the child at the IDA drug store on the Yellowhead Highway. He was unharmed.

The child said he left school during recess to find his mother, but was unable to identify his school. When he told police he went to “a big school” officers brought him to William Konkin Elementary. The child returned to class after it was explained to him he must speak with an adult before leaving school again.

The mother child’s mother, Danielle, never found out that her son had been missing until police knocked on her door.

“I did not get notified at all by the school,” she said.

Danielle said she was alarmed that nobody noticed her son was missing after the children had been outdoors. She said that somebody should be doing attendance after the kids come in from outside, especially for children her son’s age.

Danielle said that this behaviour was unusual for her son, who said he left school because he was being bothered by another student.

Assistant superintendent Mike Skinner of the Nechako Lakes District School Board would not comment on the individual case.

“Any instance of an elementary student leaving school property is concerning and is taken very seriously,” Skinner said in a statement. “In these rare occurrences, we thoroughly review our procedures, training, and facilities to understand the circumstances and implement any necessary changes. Ensuring student safety and working with families is our priority.”