Call for more action over absences

23rd June 2006 at 01:00
Parents too often condone the absence of their children from school for relatively trivial reasons, the conference was told.

It backed a resolution from Olwen Williams calling for the Assembly to put parents under the same pressure to ensure attendance as schools.

"Absence is more prevalent as children get older and there are feeble excuses from parents," she said. "The government expects schools to perform on attendance statistics, but they can't do it on their own.

"You hear nonsense after nonsense about parents' rights, but not so much about their responsibilities because that's politically inconvenient. The current situation is like having a child of separated parents who divides and rules."

Mrs Williams was backed by Hazel Hayman, a governor from Swansea, and a magistrate. "I don't think parents realise the disservice they do by not sending their child to school," she said.

"As magistrates, we've been criticised when we resort to the final censure, sending a mother to prison.

"I think we could avoid that by having pressure on parents from the Assembly wherever possible. Ninety per cent of children who come before us in court lack educational skills."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now