Two children discovered alone living inside an abandoned school bus are doing well in foster care, according to a spokesperson with Texas Child Protective Services. A hearing in two weeks will determine where the children will live permanently.
"They don’t deserve this," said Vanessa Picazo, a mail carrier who discovered the children’s living conditions. "I’m a godly woman and children don’t live like this."
Picazo normally stops only at the mailbox down the street. However, yesterday, she needed a signature to deliver a package. The oldest child told Picazo she was 13. When she signed for the package, Picazo noticed something wrong.
"She didn’t (write) in cursive," Picazo said. "She told me she didn’t know how. That told me she wasn’t being schooled."
The children’s parents are in prison. Both were convicted of fraud last year. Since then, neighbors believe the kids were being home-schooled while living with an aunt near Splendora in Montgomery County. That aunt works 12-hour days. Neighbors said she does the best she can.
"I really haven’t seen (the children) caked up dirty," said a neighbor, who did not want to be identified.
That woman said her children played and went to church with the kids.
"They were happy," she said. "They never seemed to be hungry."
Authorities disagree. One deputy said he asked the 11-year-old what she wanted for her coming birthday. The girl said dinner at Golden Corral, according to a Montgomery County Justice of the Peace Precinct 4 press release.
Just hearing that breaks Picazo’s heart.
"They don’t have to live like this," Picazo said of the children.
CPS said both children were in foster care Thursday. Officials said they plan to place both with someone, perhaps a relative, able to provide better care.