Two Nevada school districts settling big child abuse cases

RENO (AP) — Nevada's two largest school districts are admitting wrongdoing by employees on school buses in multi-million dollar settlements of a child abuse lawsuit in Reno and a federal case in Las Vegas.

The Washoe County School District agreed to a $4.4 million settlement in the alleged abuse of a student last year after the district says it determined an employee ``negligently supervised'' children involved in severe physical abuse and bullying, a newspaper reported.

The Reno Gazette Journal first reported on its web site Tuesday that the repeated abuse over six months in Washoe County involved a child with disabilities. It said the $4.4 settlement was the biggest in district history.

In Las Vegas, school trustees are due on Thursday to consider approving a $9 million settlement in the case of a former school bus driver who pleaded guilty in 2018 to sexually assaulting special needs preschoolers.

The Clark County School Board action would resolve a federal lawsuit involving the parents of a girl and a boy who were 3 and 4 years old when Michael Ray Banco was arrested in 2015.

Banco faced 41 felony charges before pleading guilty in 2018 to sexual assault and lewdness charges. He was sentenced to 35 years to life in prison.