The four Athena Middle School students from who verbally abused elderly bus monitor Karen Klein have been suspended from school and its bus transportation system for one full year, Greece Central School District Superintendent Barbara Deane-Williams announced today.

Additionally, the boys will be required to perform 50 hours of community service involving senior citizens, and complete a bullying prevention, respect and responsibility program.

Since the district is required by law to provide kids ages 5 to 16 with an education, the suspended students will spend next year at an off-campus called the Reengagement Center.

"This alternative education program keeps middle school students on track academically while providing a structured opportunity for students to take responsibility for their actions by completing community service hours and receiving formal instruction related to conduct and behavior that prepares them for a productive future," the district said in a statement.

Each student will be allowed to apply for early readmission after 30 weeks if they've "completed the conditions of their discipline and are in good standing at the Reengagement Center."

On Tuesday, Karen Klein met with Max Sidorov, the Canadian man who launched a "vacation fund" for Klein that has so far raised over $667,000, and thanked him for his support. Klein's son Brian told the Democrat and Chronicle that his mother "really cares about the kids," and is seriously considering returning to work in the fall.

[photo via AP]