KNOXVILLE (WATE) – Director of Knox County Schools Dr. Jim McIntyre was very emotional, but stern at a press conference Friday afternoon, choking back tears at one point. He says when he found out James Davenport, a school bus driver contracted to drive Knox County students, was texting while driving just before his bus crashed into another bus, killing three, he was outraged. He said the negligence, selfishness and stupidity of the driver is unacceptable.Extended coverage: Previous stories on fatal Knox County bus crash

“I plan to ask the Knoxville Police Department and the Knox County Sheriff’s Office to work with hero identify and think about any ways to enhance education and enforcement of this illegal activity. But I’ll tell you this: if we ever identify a school bus driver employed by one of our contractors texting while driving a school bus, not only will that driver be removed and that contractor be punished, but they’ll have to answer to me. And I can assure you there will be hell to pay.”

The bus Davenport was driving served over a concrete median, crashing into the side of bus #57 from Sunnyview Primary School. Zykia Burns, 6, and Seraya Glasper, 7, both students at Sunnyview Primary School were killed in the crash, and teacher’s aide Kimberly Riddle, 46.  Police say Davenport sent and received multiple text messages leading up to the crash.

Previous story: Knoxville police: Driver in deadly Knox County bus crash was texting

McIntyre says he is now going to work to honor the lives and memories of the victims by making sure nothing like this happens again, starting with a review of the district’s policies and procedures.

The other driver in the crash, Joe Gallman, was not properly licensed. In both drivers’ cases, Knox County Schools points to the fact that the drivers aren’t district employees. They are contracted through independent bus companies.

“Is it time to end school bus contracts and hire bus drivers as employees for better oversight of the people driving our kids?,” asked McIntyre. “Well you know, we just received the statements today from the Knoxville Police Department, and so certainly we will work with the Knoxville Police Department and the sheriff’s office and our own transportation and security offices to really look at all of our protocols and all of our procedures and to make sure that we feel confident that we have the ability to manage our contractors who then manage our school bus drivers to make sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to be doing.”

He says at this point that means considering any and all options to ensure he safety of our children, and that includes the possibly of doing away with independent contractors.

Currently, Knox County bus drivers are allowed to have cell phones, but there are rules. Texting is never allowed, on or off the bus. School officials have not been told whether Davenport was using his work phone or his personal phone for texting just before the crash.