The Crown has upgraded charges against a man accused of crashing his minivan into a school in St. Paul, Alta., and killing a Grade 6 student.

Richard Benson, 46, nodded to family members as he entered St. Paul provincial court on Monday morning for his first appearance on the charges.

Benson was originally charged with three counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm, one count of resisting arrest and one count of possessing marijuana.

The first three charges have now been upgraded to one count of criminal negligence causing death and two counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm. 

Benson is scheduled to return to court on Thursday when bail will be addressed.

Benson was arrested after his minivan smashed through a ground-floor window, dropping onto Racette Junior High School students attending a French class on Thursday morning.

Three girls were flown to hospital in Edmonton in critical condition. One of them, Megan Wolitski, died Friday.

Five other students were taken to hospital in St. Paul.

Benson's brother believes the crash may have been the result of a seizure.

Ralph Benson said his brother has suffered from seizures ever since he was badly beaten in Mayerthorpe, Alta., a decade ago.

CBC News has also learned that Benson has a lengthy criminal record with several driving offences, including a dangerous driving charge from 2011 that is scheduled for trial in April.