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Truancy

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NEWS
December 15, 2006
WHAT'S the big uproar over the truancy problem? For more than 50 years, Democrats have been in control of Philadelphia, telling people that their situation was someone else's fault. And they keep saying it's the government's duty to provide everyone's needs, from cradle to grave. Now they want the kids to do something for themselves (like learning). How hypocritical is that? Tom Bell, Philadelphia
NEWS
May 10, 2001
No matter how many educational reform plans are proposed, or how much money Harrisburg and City Council come up with for the schools, it's all wasted if the kids aren't in class. As reported in yesterday's Daily News, chronic truancy is a monumental problem in Philadelphia - worse than in most other cities. Its impact goes far beyond the public educational system. Kids who aren't in school get into the most trouble, now and in the future, when they can't compete in the workplace because they're undereducated and socially backward.
NEWS
April 25, 2001 | By Ken Dilanian INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
In his first major attempt to harness religious activism in the service of government, Mayor Street yesterday announced a pilot program to deploy an army of church volunteers in a battle against truancy in the Philadelphia School District. Street, a Seventh-day Adventist whose focus on so-called faith-based initiatives has won him national recognition, said it was "totally, completely unacceptable" that as many as 21,000 children - or 10 percent of the student population - are absent without an excuse each day in the city's troubled school district.
NEWS
September 14, 2006 | By Stephanie L. Arnold INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Truancy, as it turned out, was the least of his worries. A young boy whom officers attempted to question yesterday afternoon for skipping school led them to a much bigger problem inside his home in the Harrowgate section of the city: a large cache of drugs. Police said the unusual police action began around noon in the 900 block of East Tioga Street, where officers noticed that the boy was on the streets during school hours. When the officers attempted to stop the boy, he ran - leading police to his residence, where the officers soon stood face-to-face with a man allegedly holding drugs.
NEWS
March 14, 2002 | By Melanie Burney INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The hundreds of students who skip school in Camden every day will be rounded up and their parents will be haled into court, district Superintendent Annette D. Knox said yesterday. "We intend to find our children, and we intend to bring them back to school," Knox pledged in launching an ambitious plan to cut the district's abysmal dropout and attendance rates. "We can't fail these kids; they've been failed for too long. " Effective immediately, Knox said, the district - South Jersey's largest - will begin enforcing existing attendance policies and making changes to curb truancy.
NEWS
August 29, 2005 | By CHERYL RANSOM-GARNER
FOR MANY parents, the start of the school year poses challenges far more serious than getting their kids to choose back-to-school clothes. Many have to worry about their children making it to school at all. Truancy continues to be an obstacle in the city's efforts to improve life for all young people. On any day, 12,000 Philadelphia children are truant. The Department of Human Services uses a network of services to reduce the truancy rate. In the last year, 97 percent of the youth served by these programs have been removed from the School District's chronic truancy list.
NEWS
January 13, 1994 | BY MELINDA ROTH
It seems to me that the Daily News has addressed the problem of truancy in the schools by saying that this is the underlying problem . . . that is . . . truancy. But in fact truancy in the inner-city school is not the problem. It is the solution. Are you shocked? If you work for an inner-city school or attempt to attend a school you will understand. At schools, many students are scared of other students or find that getting to school is too much of an effort. The problem is the community which is being let into the school.
NEWS
January 11, 2007
RE COUNCILMAN Goode's comments to schools CEO Paul Vallas: I agree with the councilman that truancy is a major problem. But does the councilman have a solution? Does he really think the school district can fix truancy? If he were superintendent, would truancy disappear? Councilman Goode's father was the city's chief executive for eight years. Was Goode Sr. any less committed than his son to getting kids in school? Despite the fact that the "brothers and sisters run the city," truancy, drug-trafficking and homicide are an ongoing plague.
NEWS
June 7, 1995 | By Sonya Senkowsky, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
As part of the district's promised crackdown on students who habitually cut school, the borough held its first truancy court session yesterday morning, and found itself with a few more unexcused absences. Of 12 parents called to court to explain why their elementary- and high- school-age children had missed as much as half the school year, about half the parents didn't show up, either. Those who did not appear face warrants for their arrest, police said. The others, who all pleaded not guilty, left with guilty verdicts and promises of fines - as much as $100 for every additional day of school their children miss from now until the end of the school year on June 9. In a meeting of the Board of Education in May, Superintendent Walter C. Quint announced that the district would be taking a harder line on attendance, which has dipped below 90 percent in the high school.
NEWS
May 14, 2001
While Truancy Court is a good program (cover story, May 9), we need to look at the real factor behind truancy - poverty. Almost all these kids come from homes where there is a lack of resources. Unfortunately, the goals in an impoverished home are different from the ones with economic stability. More money needs to be made available for these kids. And a future needs to be clearly shown to them, not just lip-service. Who will pay to give these kids opportunity? That's the question, isn't it?
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
March 28, 2016 | By Allison Steele, Staff Writer
For the third time since September, attendance officer Carol Cooper knocked on the door of the home in Camden's Lanning Square section. The boy who lived there had racked up 12 unexcused absences since the start of the school year. When Cooper came on her most recent visit earlier this month, the boy's stepfather opened the door. Cooper asked if he knew why his stepson was missing class. "The school bus comes late," said the man. "He catches the bus every day. But the bus doesn't come here till 8. " If the boy gets on the bus, he shouldn't be counted absent, Cooper said, but an 8 a.m. bus wouldn't get him to Camden High School until the middle of first period.
NEWS
February 21, 2016 | By Kristen A. Graham and Susan Snyder, STAFF WRITERS
For as long as principal James Williams can remember, the freshman class at Kensington Health Sciences Academy has struggled with showing up to school every day. That is, until two weeks ago, when the school joined a White House initiative aimed at addressing chronic absenteeism in schools in 10 cities around the United States. Freshmen were once the school's worst-attending class, but 90 percent of the class showed up to school Thursday, besting the school average of 83 percent attendance.
NEWS
June 12, 2015 | BY SOLOMON LEACH, Daily News Staff Writer leachs@phillynews.com, 215-854-5903
WHAT'S THE BEST way to cut down on the school-to-prison pipeline? Keep kids in school, according to District Attorney Seth Williams. The city's top prosecutor routinely recites the frightening statistics: High school dropouts in Philly are eight times more likely to go to state prison than their counterparts. They are also more likely to be murder victims. To tackle the issue, Williams wants to get tougher on truancy by sending letters to families of students who rack up 10 or more unexcused absences - with the threat of criminal charges if the kids don't straighten up. "I want the D.A.'s office to be the hammer for [Superintendent William]
NEWS
October 17, 2013 | BY SOLOMON LEACH, Daily News Staff Writer leachs@phillynews.com, 215-854-5903
RESIDENTS in West Philadelphia and University City should be on alert about a series of recent robberies in the area, mainly being committed by juveniles, police said at a community meeting last night. Residential burglaries in the 18th Police District are up 13 percent for the year, according to police data. In several of the recent break-ins, authorities said, the opportunistic criminals have taken advantage of unlocked windows or doors. Police arrested three juvenile suspects yesterday and an 11-year-old boy last week.
NEWS
October 9, 2012
RE: "Your rights vs. your privileges" (editorial, Oct. 2). There are many rights guaranteed by the Constitution, including the right to bear arms and the right to a jury of my peers. Is the author suggesting that those rights should not require identification? Or does the author wish to handpick which rights require identification? I agree that voting is an essential right, a right that those ineligible to vote are not entitled to. T.L. Gordon Drexel Hill Re: Christine Flowers "Right to Vote" column (Oct.
NEWS
November 18, 2011
Police, district focus on school safety The Inquirer spent more than three full pages on Nov. 6 to tell a story about the training and deployment of police officers in the Houston Independent School District ("Armed with guns and understanding"). Much of the four-story package was devoted to detailed profiles of Houston cops working in schools, maintaining safety, and acting as important role models for teenagers. The very same story could have been written about Philadelphia.
NEWS
October 27, 2011 | By Claudia Vargas, Inquirer Staff Writer
Camden's weeks-long anti-truancy program was plagued by confusion and missteps - and drew criticism from some for its core idea: paying students - but on Wednesday, the glow on Camden High School sophomore Bria King's face suggested it was all worth it to her. "I loved the program," King said softly with a shy smile. She was among 55 high school students honored in a ceremony at Creative Arts Morgan Village Academy for completing the program. Not everyone made it through - 66 students had initially signed up for the six-week program.
NEWS
September 24, 2011 | By Claudia Vargas, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Camden County Prosecutor's Office has saved the day - payday - for the dozens of Camden youths who are part of the city's latest anti-truancy initiative. When the six-week program ends Friday, 58 at-risk youths from three Camden high schools will receive $600 each. The students are enrolled in the city's I Can End Truancy (ICE-T), a $63,000 program meant to encourage those at risk of dropping out to attend school regularly and improve academically. The program - which drew criticism from some Council members as sending the wrong message to students - garnered national attention for essentially paying students to stay in school.
NEWS
August 24, 2011 | By Claudia Vargas, Inquirer Staff Writer
Nearly 70 Camden high school students will be paid $100 each to not skip school. The city's newest attempt at combating truancy - I Can End Truancy, or ICE-T - will focus on conflict-resolution and anger-management workshops and educational reinforcement during the next five weeks, ending Sept. 30. Sixty-six youths, who range from incoming high school freshmen to seniors, filed into the Isabel Miller Community Center in Camden's Liberty Park neighborhood Tuesday for their first anti-truancy session.
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