Saturday, October 23, 2010

Stay in school... or else!

My daughter brought home a letter from Harris County District Attorney Pat Lykos this week regarding Harris County's Stay in School Program. The letter began extolling the benefits of staying in school and getting your education but then evolved into a threat of criminal prosecution.
"Under Texas law, unexcused absences are a criminal offense, and both parents and students can be charged."
That's exactly what we need, more excuses to drag folks through the criminal justice system. Handing truancy matters to the courts is yet another example of schools abdicating their responsibilities. Get into a fight at school -- get cited and go to court. Disrupt class -- get cited and go to court.
"If...your child continues to incur additional unexcused absences, the school will file a case in a Justice of the Peace court, where you and your child must appear in response to the charges."
There's your solution to kids not showing up at school -- send them to the courthouse during school hours. Would that at least count as an excused absence?
"If your child deviates from the terms of the program, then additional conditions will be added... Non-compliance will ultimately lead to charges being filed against your child in a Harris County Juvenile District Court."
We need to get these kids processed through the system early so we don't have to waste time down the road should they be arrested for anything. The sheer number of people in this country who are in custody or under court supervision is simply astounding -- let's add some more to the tally.

And, of course, here's the kicker:
"Each parent is also subject to very large fines."
That's it -- it's a money grab.

No comments: