The mother said that she often took the boy, whose age was not given, to his school in Plymouth, or put him on the school bus, but when he got there, he would simply walk out of the school gates. Surely if she had tried her best she is not a criminal. What exactly does the State expect her to do?
This stupid law (part of the Education Welfare Act) has never reduced truancy. Since it was passed, truancy in schools in the UK has not gone down. It has gone up. And the crazy thing is that more than 12,000 parents per year are being subjected to this kind of prosecution and 9,000 of them are getting custodial sentences. Meanwhile violent thugs, rapists and other criminals walk free.
How exactly does the State expect a mother to force her child to go to school? She can tell him it's a good idea but if he's not convinced you've got a problem. By the time a boy is 12, he is probably too big and strong for his mother to force him to do anything. In the eyes of the law, a parent cannot use force even to make their child have a bath - if they do they can be prosecuted for assault. That is a fact. The child can be taken into care if a parent uses violence. So what the hell is this poor suffering, pregnant mum supposed to do? And is the boy any more likely to go to school while she is in gaol?
There are supposed to be educational social workers who deal with this sort of case. Was the boy bored at school because he had no friends, or because was surrounded by others of a different culture, possibly children whose language he did not speak? Was he possibly dyslexic, or even being bullied? What else was he doing instead of going there? And finally, the $50,000 question... where was the father, and why was he taking no responsibility? Why isn't he gaoled too?
Our state schools these days are so bad it would be better to play truant than attend them most of the time. The teachers are not selected for their intelligence or academic attainment, merely for their willingness to conform to a PC curriculum. And with pupils nowadays being taught to practice promiscuity, homosexuality and drug-abuse, there can be decided advantages of non-attendance.
No parent should be criminalised for having problems with their child. This law is idiotic, it is unfair and it is a waste of public funds. I call to have it repealed now.
Education (Welfare) Act.
PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITIES: THE TRUANCY LAWS EXPLAINED
The law states that parents are responsible for ensuring children aged five to 16 attend school regularly, unless they are home educated.
Headteachers, social workers or police can issue parents with penalty notices of up to £120 if a child regularly misses school, and their parents have not taken action or asked for help.
If this is not paid a prosecution will follow, which can lead to a fine of up to £2,500, a community sentence, or even a three-month jail term.
In some browsers, you may have to click on the title to make comment box appear.