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Should the parents of children who don’t go to school be punished? (Truancy, punish parents)

If a child chooses to miss school, it is the child, not the parent who is at fault. Usually the parents want their child to attend school. If anyone should be punished, it should be the truant. After all, they are thinking, independent human beings, not just the property of their parents. Many parents are at their wit’s end about how to control their kids.

Our prisons are crowded and it is very expensive to keep someone in jail. Parents of truants are not violent or a threat to others. Jail should be kept for real crimes and dangerous offenders.

Truancy cannot be treated on its own - it is often a warning sign of other problems. Many children truant because they know they will be bullied and are scared to go to school. Others have learning or behavioural difficulties that the school is failing to tackle. Some are very bright and don’t see any point of turning up for lessons that do not stretch them, or where discipline is so bad learning is not possible. Until the reasons children play truant are dealt with, no amount of punishment will work.

Punishment is a heavy-handed policy and often applied unfairly. Different schools and local officials have different approaches, and some resort to threats of prison far too quickly.


Asked by LanaisSky96 at 11:09 PM on May. 13, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Level 16 (2,820 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (17)
  • That is hard tell. It depends.

    Answer by Amanda272011 at 9:58 PM on May. 16, 2011

  • I have to disagree with the above poster. That's incredibly judgemental and just completely inaccurate. Many children who were raised right skip school. I was one of them. My parents were great, my dad is a preacher, but not overly strict and controlling as some stereotypes. I have suffered major depression and mood disorders since elementary. They got me treatment but as a teen I rebelled, got into the wrong crowd and self mediated with drugs and alcohol. And I have never seen either of my parent drink a drop of alcohol in my life. Kids have their own personalities and issues, your blaming the parents for everything does the kids a huge disservice and gives them the attitude that they are not responsible for their actions. And also shows how you apparently haven't been around a troubled teen ever. These issues should be handled by family services, not the courts. In my experience most of these kids have underlying issues.

    Answer by Astraea_79 at 11:35 PM on May. 13, 2011

  • I've never heard of a student being sent to prison for truancy... Wow, you're in some tough school district!

    Answer by GoodyBrook at 11:19 PM on May. 13, 2011

  • Our public schools don't make the parents go to jail, instead if their kids miss too many days they are taken to court and fined.

    Answer by scout_mom at 11:29 PM on May. 13, 2011

  • what age children are you talking about? I find it sad that the younger kids parents cannot get them to school on time. Oldder kids should be punished, if able to drive themself. We had Saturday school if we missed too many school days. Then the school district takes the parents and child to court. You have to explain to the judge why your child was not in school for X number of days. I think, there is then a fine to pay and / or to pay for summer school. (in Texas)

    Answer by SassySue123 at 11:32 PM on May. 13, 2011

  • Well, at this point in time, my son is 7. I drive him to school. So if he missed school, or was tardy on a regular basis... then that wouldn't be his fault. That would be mine. I think there is a degree of responsibility on both sides.

    Answer by daughteroftruth at 11:57 PM on May. 13, 2011

  • i was one of the kids that skipped school because most of the lessons i learned already by research of my own the only class i liked was English wasnt my dads fault he taught me to go to school and do well, i just got bored way to easy (ADHD my dad has it to)

    Answer by Lizzypuppylove at 12:14 AM on May. 14, 2011

  • and i would say it should be the students fault not the parent....even though i never got in trouble to leaving school XD

    Answer by Lizzypuppylove at 12:14 AM on May. 14, 2011

  • I'm assuming we are talking high school kids because younger than that if they are purposely skipping school the parents had BETTER know about it, and it IS the parents responsibility to get them to school (barring illness, death in the family, or other legitimate excuses).  As for high school.. it depends.. it is partially the parents, it's also the students fault for skipping class.    Do I think they (the parents) deserve jail time over it?   no.   at that point (15+) it should be the responsibility of the kid to get themselves to school.


    Answer by xxhazeldovexx at 1:26 AM on May. 14, 2011

  • I have a great mother, but I skipped school, I left the house like I was going, waited until she went to work, backtracked and went back home. I don't think that could be the parents fault at all, she thought i was doing what I should be doing. I just was bored in school, I didn't skip all the time, but sometimes we thought we found something better to do. There was a group of us.

    Answer by Bubbie0809 at 7:08 AM on May. 14, 2011