National Truancy Coordinator, Yvonne Arthur, has reported that 55 parents have been placed before the courts for neglecting to educate their children, since the Education Ministry stepped up its truancy campaign last year.
Parents are placed before the court when they fail to send their children to school, despite assistance from government and other support agencies.
According to the Ministry yesterday, it took a decision to prosecute parents who have abandoned their responsibility to educate their children. The campaign was a bid to send a clear message on the matter.
Child employers are also being targeted, under the truancy campaign.
Reports from school welfare officers have indicated that poor parenting and parental neglect are the primary causes of truancy, the statement said yesterday. “The Schools Welfare Department has so far been able to place a number of children who never attended school in an institution of learning.”
Arthur called on headteachers to make available to the Schools Welfare Department the names of students who are regularly absent from school, and stressed that a child can still be enrolled at a school, even though he or she does not have a birth certificate.
Education Minister Shaik Baksh had explained that his ministry is moving to prosecute negligent parents as efforts to talk to them on shouldering their responsibility have been futile.
He said the stern action has to be taken to ensure that every child attends school, receives a sound education and becomes a productive citizen in society.
Government, according to the ministry, is providing free uniform, text books and other forms of support to students, and it is the responsibility of parents to do their duties.
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