Teen girl killed in crash with school bus identified as junior at William Penn

Nick Perez - Delaware Online

An after-school crash Thursday near New Castle between a school bus of elementary students and a car full of high school girls left a 16-year-old dead and three other students injured.

Around 3:40 p.m. a school bus loaded with 22 students from Eisenberg Elementary School struck a car containing four 16-year-old girls from William Penn High School, according to police and Colonial School district officials.

The 16-year-old driver of the car was pronounced dead at the scene near the intersection of Memorial and Karlyn drives.

Colonial School District officials identified the driver as Jordan Tate, a junior at William Penn and a member of the ROTC.

The other three girls were taken to the hospital. One was in serious condition Thursday night and the other two were stable, police said.

Students on the bus were shaken but physically unharmed. Two 10-year old boys were taken to DuPont Children’s Hospital out of precaution but were released to their parents, according to Colonial officials.

“This is a heartbreaking time for all of us in Colonial Nation. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of the families involved,” said Superintendent Dusty Blakey. 

Counselors and crisis teams will be on hand at schools Friday to assist students who wish to speak to them or appear to have difficulty dealing with the tragic news, school officials said.

Memorial Drive between North DuPont Highway and New Castle Avenue was closed late Thursday while police investigated the crash.

"This is a horrific series of events," said New Castle County Police spokesman Master Cpl. Michel Eckerd.

Police asked anyone who may have witnessed the crash to contact them.

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