Thursday, January 7, 2016

Parents of Truant Students Given Second Chance

Posted By on Thu, Jan 7, 2016 at 4:11 PM

  • Thomas Favre-Bulle
Parents who have pending court summonses for their child's chronic truancy will be given a chance to resolve those issues next Monday without the threat of jail time.

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Department Fugitive Squad has summonses pending for parents of 117 Shelby County Schools students who have missed five or more school days without an excuse. On Monday, January 11th, those summonses will be addressed during Operation Safe Surrender at Mt. Moriah Baptist Church between 4 and 7 p.m. At that event, parents will be placed on a General Sessions court docket, and a remedy plan will determined for each case.

“No one is going to jail,” said Megan Pietrowski, program coordinator of the Shelby County District Attorney's Mentoring Based Truancy Reduction Program. “This will be a safe environment."

Parents of students who have five or more days of unexcused absences can be charged with a misdemeanor and sentenced to up to 11 months and 29 days in jail or fines of up to $2,500.

Through the D.A's office's truancy reduction program, truant students are paired with mentors, who provide encouragement and support for at least one year. The program has assisted more than 4,000 students since it began in the 2006-2007 school year.

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