Research on parents prosecuted for truancy

Children and families are being damaged by a rush to punish the parents, hitting parents who have children with special educational needs, disability and medical conditions. Guest post by Rona Epstein, Coventry University – take part in her survey.

image © Jonathan Billinger

RESEARCH ON PARENTS PROSECUTED FOR TRUANCY: what happens if your child does not attend school regularly (and what should happen?)

Guest post by Rona Epstein, Coventry University Law School

In 2016, a total of 22,453 people were proceeded against for the offence of truancy (parent failing to secure attendance of child) and 15,663 were convicted. Of those proceeded against, 12,572 were women and of those convicted, 9,333 were women. In terms of sentencing, 89 women out of 127 people were given a suspended sentence and 10 women out of 13 people were given an immediate custodial sentence.

At Coventry University we are concerned about families and children who have found it difficult to get their child to attend school, so we are conducting research where we hope to find out about the families whose children have been identified as having a poor attendance record. These parents are often fined or threatened with going to prison.

What are the problems behind a child refusing to go to school? Do the children and parents get the help they need? This is what we would like to find out. So we are looking for people who have been or are in this position to tell us, in confidentiality, about their situation.

When we report on our results all information will be fully anonymised before we release information in any articles, blogs or other formats. Your confidentiality will always be fully respected and protected.

Anyone who would like to take part in this survey please CLICK HERE.

Thank you very much for your help in this research. Please share with your friends and contacts.

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