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Truancy fines change...

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    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education...-benefits.html

    Parents who don't pay the fine will have the money deducted from benefits.

    Here we go again.Being tough with feckless parents vs punishing the disadvantaged...
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    Punishing the disadvantaged? If these people sent their runts to school to get an education so that they could actually be productive, they wouldn't be penalised.

    I would have it punished custodially, not financially.
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    (Original post by Otkem)
    Punishing the disadvantaged? If these people sent their runts to school to get an education so that they could actually be productive, they wouldn't be penalised.

    I would have it punished custodially, not financially.
    Well, not that far. But yes, I think it would be an idea to have the ability to claim child benefit dependent on the child having good attendance at school.
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    The government and, on a smaller scale, schools, are so ignorant of individuality that many schools, and the government, will take any cases of repeated/ongoing absences as truancy without actually looking into the reasons, which puts a few groups at risk of being labelled truants and their families being fined when they are part of the families that can least afford to pay - young carers are the main group that comes to mind because it is a group that I have experience of being a part of. Being a young carer means we will invariably have to take more time off school than children without caring responsibilities, and yet carers save the government so much money every year, we get little or no thanks for it and now it looks like we'll actually get punished for it.
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    It'll be an incentive for the more lax parents to pay more attention to their kids. We'll have to see if it becomes a hindrance rather than a help.
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    (Original post by madders94)
    The government and, on a smaller scale, schools, are so ignorant of individuality that many schools, and the government, will take any cases of repeated/ongoing absences as truancy without actually looking into the reasons, which puts a few groups at risk of being labelled truants and their families being fined when they are part of the families that can least afford to pay - young carers are the main group that comes to mind because it is a group that I have experience of being a part of. Being a young carer means we will invariably have to take more time off school than children without caring responsibilities, and yet carers save the government so much money every year, we get little or no thanks for it and now it looks like we'll actually get punished for it.
    Do you have any sort of research or statistics that indicate that the majority (or even a significant minority) of truanters are young carers?

    If a child is having to take time off to look after a disabled parent, then that fact is easily enough verified and recognised, and then allowances made for the child to receive an alternative education somehow.

    The problems are with children who are repeatedly out of school for no reason or with an extremely weak excuse.

    Oh, and people who assume that truancy is somehow excusable because there is ALWAYS somebody else to blame (as usual)
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    I think you misunderstand. It's not about punishing the disadvantaged because they are disadvantaged. It's punishing them for being crappy parents.

    If they were good parents and did their job correctly, their child would go to school. It is not punishment for the sake of it, hopefully this will help motivate people to make their children go to school.
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    (Original post by madders94)
    The government and, on a smaller scale, schools, are so ignorant of individuality that many schools, and the government, will take any cases of repeated/ongoing absences as truancy without actually looking into the reasons, which puts a few groups at risk of being labelled truants and their families being fined when they are part of the families that can least afford to pay - young carers are the main group that comes to mind because it is a group that I have experience of being a part of. Being a young carer means we will invariably have to take more time off school than children without caring responsibilities, and yet carers save the government so much money every year, we get little or no thanks for it and now it looks like we'll actually get punished for it.
    While I have the greatest of respect for young carers and the difficulty of their situation, I can't help but feel that if the young person is repeatedly missing from school, then the level of care required for the adult has reached the point where the state should step in. Sacrificing your long term prospects does not save the government money, as it basically guarantees that you will require constant government subsidy for the rest of your life.
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    (Original post by marcusfox)
    Do you have any sort of research or statistics that indicate that the majority (or even a significant minority) of truanters are young carers?

    If a child is having to take time off to look after a disabled parent, then that fact is easily enough verified and recognised, and then allowances made for the child to receive an alternative education somehow.

    The problems are with children who are repeatedly out of school for no reason or with an extremely weak excuse.

    Oh, and people who assume that truancy is somehow excusable because there is ALWAYS somebody else to blame (as usual)
    I'm not saying that the majority are young carers but young carers do have to miss a lot of school, I know this from personal experience and talking to a number of other young carers who have experienced the same, and all have found the school to not be forthcoming with their understanding or acceptance, even when the situation is explained and verified.

    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    While I have the greatest of respect for young carers and the difficulty of their situation, I can't help but feel that if the young person is repeatedly missing from school, then the level of care required for the adult has reached the point where the state should step in. Sacrificing your long term prospects does not save the government money, as it basically guarantees that you will require constant government subsidy for the rest of your life.
    The problem is that the state refuse to step in. I care for my Dad and his care from the state has all but disappeared because, as funding disappears, so does the provision of services, and the government clearly does not see the care of people with long term disabilities and mental illnesses as a priority, which is why they're encouraging ATOS to find as many people as possible "fit for work" when they aren't - it means they don't have to pay as much for the provision of healthcare for these people.

    Personally, the amount of time I've had to take off due to caring duties has fluctuated based on how ill my Dad has been, so there have been times when my attendance has been great and times where it's been awful because he is so ill and I'm needed at home as the eldest child (the distance from home to school/college has been a massive problem for us), so for me it hasn't impacted on my future prospects - I've done fairly well so far and I'm going to uni this September - but I agree that there are some cases where there is so much time taken off, and that is where there needs to be more support from the government, otherwise they're digging themselves a bigger hole because, with no future prospects, the young carer will grow up having to be reliant on the state too.

    Anyway, took it slightly off topic there, sorry

    I think that if each case was taken on its own merits and all the circumstances looked into and considered, and they distinguished between absences which are unavoidable and absences which are just pure truancy, fine - but if they do this, I can see there being so many fines appealed because they'll have just slapped a fine on without looking at the circumstances surrounding it.
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    Surely they are able to register absences which are unavoidable? The parent can inform the school of a required absence and that can be taken into account. If the school agrees the need to be absent is valid, then they should be able to continue to receive child support until circumstances again change.

    You can cry about this being a blanket policy, but if kids aren't going to school because their parents don't give enough of a sod about them, then they have to be incentivised to care.
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    Does this take into account children who are just plain bad? It's not always the parents fault, whatever the media and the Government tell you.
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    £60 is a tiny amount relative to the savings you make bunking off for a holiday in school term.
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    (Original post by gladders)
    Surely they are able to register absences which are unavoidable? The parent can inform the school of a required absence and that can be taken into account. If the school agrees the need to be absent is valid, then they should be able to continue to receive child support until circumstances again change.

    You can cry about this being a blanket policy, but if kids aren't going to school because their parents don't give enough of a sod about them, then they have to be incentivised to care.
    The problem is that some schools don't see being a young carer as a valid reason for absence, they seem to think that people who are disabled get tons and tons of state help and so they don't need us to be at home to help look after them. What they don't take into account is 1) thanks to the government, most disabled people now get little or no help from the state, and 2) sometimes it isn't just caring for the person - if my dad has an appointment, I might need to take the day or the afternoon off college depending on bus timetables, to be there to pick up my little brother and sister from school, and sometimes I might be late going in because he's had an unexpected breakdown and there's nothing any of us can do about it - but the teachers see it as any excuse for time off and we're punished for it.
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    (Original post by madders94)
    The government and, on a smaller scale, schools, are so ignorant of individuality that many schools, and the government, will take any cases of repeated/ongoing absences as truancy without actually looking into the reasons, which puts a few groups at risk of being labelled truants and their families being fined when they are part of the families that can least afford to pay - young carers are the main group that comes to mind because it is a group that I have experience of being a part of. Being a young carer means we will invariably have to take more time off school than children without caring responsibilities, and yet carers save the government so much money every year, we get little or no thanks for it and now it looks like we'll actually get punished for it.
    Then make it clear to the school. Many will be understanding but if the school does not know whats going on they are going to treat it as truancy
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    (Original post by Aj12)
    Then make it clear to the school. Many will be understanding but if the school does not know whats going on they are going to treat it as truancy
    Mine knew exactly what was going on and still complained and treated me like a truant. Maybe it's different in other schools but at mine it was seen as not being a valid excuse.
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    I approve of this move. It's not going to tackle the whole problem, but it's certainly a start.
    Making kids *want* to stay in school and be productive is a separate task, but making sure that parents actually send kids to school and perhaps take a more active role in their lives is a step in the right direction.
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    Got to break a few eggs to make an omelette. Whilst some may scream about the people who may be 'victimised' as a result of this measure, I can't help but feel it might finally be legislation like this that whips this country into shape and out of doldrums.
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    (Original post by madders94)
    Mine knew exactly what was going on and still complained and treated me like a truant. Maybe it's different in other schools but at mine it was seen as not being a valid excuse.
    There must be a means to appeal.
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    This system isn't punishing TRUANCY though, it's targeting and punishing poorer truants.
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    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    Got to break a few eggs to make an omelette. Whilst some may scream about the people who may be 'victimised' as a result of this measure, I can't help but feel it might finally be legislation like this that whips this country into shape and out of doldrums.
    But it's not as simple as a throwaway phrase like "got to break a few eggs to make an omelette" - this is about punishing the families who can't afford it whilst the ones who can throw away that kind of money like it's nothing will be absolutely fine. When you're dealing with people, collateral damage is never ok - especially when you're looking at a family for whom this fine could mean they can't afford food for the family for the week as well as everything else they need.

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