Truancy Awareness Course 101

Truancy Awareness Course 101: Things You Need To Know

September 19, 2023

Schools and school districts often need to provide adequate training and preparation for their staff to address truancy. This course offers comprehensive training for those who work with students and families to reduce truancy.

This course covers theory and legislation related to student absenteeism, setting up and structuring campus attendance teams, and working with students and parents. This course also includes practical job skills.

What Is A Truancy Awareness Course?

Skipping school is not just a bad habit; it’s against the law. In some states, parents can even be jailed for letting their kids skip class too often. Whether it’s because of a medical issue or family problems, students must attend school regularly. Unexcused absences can add up and prevent students from learning and achieving their full potential. The truancy awareness course is designed to help educators, counselors, and other school personnel work with families with attendance problems. It is also designed to assist judges, magistrates, and truancy court clerks who handle truancy cases, as well as state and county officials, attorneys, probation officers, police departments, and parent groups. This class can be taken by a student, parent, or guardian on their own or may be required as part of a truancy court case or other legal matter.

What Is Truancy Prevention?

Truancy prevention focuses on the underlying issues that cause students to miss school and helps them return to learning. It addresses the social and emotional factors contributing to truancy and works with the student and their family to identify what is holding them back. Schools use a variety of strategies to address truancy, including creating safe and supportive environments for their students. They also engage parents as partners in their student’s education, providing them access to support services and resources. Upon notification of an unexcused absence, campus administrators or student support personnel meet with the truant student and their parent to discuss what is causing the missed school days. They provide options for help and keep a record of all conferences and interventions. If a student’s situation does not improve, they may be referred to truancy intervention.

What Is Truancy Intervention?

Truancy intervention is a collaborative process between school systems and courts. This approach focuses on addressing the underlying cause of truancy and preventing truancy from becoming a recurring issue for students and their families. Some courts have created specialized truancy dockets and work closely with school system officials and law enforcement agencies to resolve cases. These programs often involve regular meetings between the student, their parents, and a judge. They may also include family counseling and education workshops to address the issues causing truancy.

Other truancy programs have been implemented by sheriff’s offices and city police departments. These programs may involve picking up truant students and taking them to a central truancy unit where they will be given basic assessments, interviews, and counseling. The program will create positive relationships between students, their families, and school staff. It will also help the student set short and long-term goals for success.

What Is A Truancy Court?

Depending on the state or county, if a student misses a significant number of days from school, they could be taken to Truancy Court. In this type of court, students and parents must pay fines, attend counseling, or complete community service. In extreme cases, chronic truancy can result in being forced to repeat a grade or even serving time in juvenile detention. Many experts recommend that schools try to avoid truancy court intervention by focusing on prevention strategies and utilizing truancy officers who can work with families directly. However, if these preventive measures are unsuccessful, a petition can be filed to bring the family into the legal system.

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