BOSTON (WHDH) - A Boston charter school is making immediate changes after it lost track of a 5-year-old student Monday.

Five-year-old Nylah Kamara is back home and safe with her family after the ordeal, which according to her mother Kyeisha Alexander, started when Nylah was mistaken for another student. Based on the other student’s name, Nylah was placed on the wrong school bus at the end of the day, setting off an hours-long panic that and triggering a missing person alert.

“I’m shooken up, I’m angry – it’s all types of emotions running through my head,” said Alexander. “I’m just blown away that it’s her first day of school, she’s only five, and they couldn’t even tell me where she went.”

Alexander told reporters she had dropped her daughter off at Match Community Day Charter Public School in Hyde Park on Monday morning, introducing her to a staff member who greeted them.

“She took her out, she put her in line – I waited until she walked into the school,” Alexander said. “So, I’d seen her walk into the school.”

But come afternoon pick-up time, Nylah was not outside, and the school informed her mother that the 5-year-old had been marked absent.

“They couldn’t tell me where she was, they couldn’t tell me what bus she was on,” she said.

According to Alexander, Nylah was mistaken for another student who was, in fact, absent on Monday. But, because of the student’s name, Nylah was placed on the wrong school bus, taking her to the wrong residence.

Nylah’s family started checking different locations Monday afternoon, with Boston Police soon joining in the search, issuing a missing person alert that evening.

The school eventually realized what happened when Nylah’s mother showed them a photo of her daughter, leading to officials realizing Nylah had not been the student they thought she was.

Nylah was checked by EMS staff after returning to her family and, aside from feeling a little shaken according to her mother, is doing OK.

“There is no excuse for this incident,” Match Community Day Charter Public School said in a statement in part. “We have met with the child’s family and have expressed our deep regret. We are immediately instituting improvements to our arrival and dismissal procedures.”

Those changes include:

  • Confirming every child’s dismissal plan
  • Adjusting dismissal staffing
  • Improving transition procedures at all grade levels

Alexander said she’s glad her daughter is safe but knows things could’ve been worse.

“I just pray that this happens to nobody else’s kid on the first day of school,” said Alexander.

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