In the wake of the January abduction of a 5-year-old girl from Bryant School in West Philadelphia, Councilman Curtis Jones Jr. on Thursday called for a City Council hearing to examine the Philadelphia School District's policy for releasing students to parents and other caretakers.

"There should be a uniform process," Jones said.

School District spokesman Fernando Gallard said district officials had a dismissal policy but welcomed the opportunity to discuss it with Council.

On Jan. 14, a woman went to Bryant to pick up the girl. Staff failed to follow procedure, and allowed the woman to simply go to a classroom and get the child.

Jones said he believed the district's policy needed clarification in many areas, including how to identify a person whose face is covered. The woman was wearing a Muslim head covering.

Police are still trying to determine who took the 5-year-old, who was found the next day at an Upper Darby playground by Nelson Mandela Myers as he headed to work.

On Thursday, Council honored Mandela Myers for following cries from the playground that he initially thought were from a cat. After he found the girl, he called police.

His remarks before Council were brief: "I was just doing what a good man is supposed to do."

Contact Miriam Hill at or 215-854-5520. Follow her on Twitter @miriamhill.