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Truancy

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
December 4, 2006
THE STUDENT SHALL: Attend school and all assigned class periods every day. Arrive at school and every class period on time. Obey all school rules, dress codes and behave appropriately at school. Complete and return all homework as directed. THE PARENT/GUARDIAN SHALL: Ensure the child gets to school every day and on time. Not remove the child from school early without providing the school with a valid excuse. Ensure that any student absences are for legitimate, excused reasons only.
NEWS
December 4, 2006
EXCUSES. EXCUSES. It used to be the children who were full of them. These days, it's often parents who are adept at blaming everyone and everything except themselves when it comes to their children, school and truancy. The gripes and grumbles we heard last week from the thousands of parents at Temple's Liacouras Center gave the distinct impression that the school district's truancy problem is as much a case of absent kids as it is of absent parents. Then again, much of the parental grumbling might be chalked up to the command summons they got from the the city's ultimate principal, Mayor Street.
NEWS
December 2, 2006 | By Martha Woodall, Susan Snyder and Dafney Tales INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
Greg Patton had expected to find fewer students on the street skipping school the morning after Mayor Street warned thousands of parents and students of a truancy crackdown. Jail time and fines await parents whose children continue to miss school. The message was all over the city - in yesterday's newspapers and on radio and television. But on the street, "It was business as usual," said Patton, who oversees truancy sweeps for the school district every weekday morning. Working from yesterday's base at SEPTA's Frankford Terminal, city police, school police and SEPTA police picked up 58 truants - part of a total of 210 citywide - a typical roundup.
NEWS
December 1, 2006 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Mayor Street told thousands of parents of chronic truants - ordered to appear at a woodshed session at the Liacouras Center last night or face jail time - that they would be smart to take advantage of their last chance for amnesty. From now on, he said, Philadelphia School District students with more than three unexcused absences will get a home visit from a truant officer. And parents whose children rack up eight or more illegal absences could find themselves in weekend parenting classes, hauled before a judge, or even in a jail cell.
NEWS
November 17, 2006
PHILADELPHIA, open your eyes, check the clock, and pick up your phone. Your actions could impact the lives of thousands of kids, and our city's crime rate, both right now and years down the road. If you see a school-age kid during school hours hanging out on the street - or in the mall or near the corner store - call 215-400-SAFE. Report the truant. Stop trouble before it starts, or it grows up to become bigger trouble. Playing hooky sounds like light-hearted fun. But for many kids, it becomes a way of life.
NEWS
November 16, 2006 | By Kristen A. Graham and Martha Woodall INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
City and school district officials announced a war on truancy yesterday, pledging $3 million in new money and 400 new employees to expand Philadelphia's efforts to get wayward students back into classrooms. At the center of the effort - backed by Mayor Street and Philadelphia schools chief Paul Vallas - is a dramatic jump in the number of parent truancy officers who contact families by phone and visit homes to get students to return to school. There are 100 parent truancy officers.
NEWS
November 15, 2006 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Mayor Street and Philadelphia schools chief Paul Vallas are expected to announce today a joint, renewed effort to take aim at the city's rampant truancy problem. About 40 percent of the city's public schoolchildren - 90,000 students - have eight or more unexcused absences. Joe Grace, a spokesman for the mayor, said the anti-truancy initiative had been in the works for months and involved the efforts of Street, Vallas and Jacqueline Barnett, the mayor's secretary of education.
NEWS
October 31, 2006 | By Susan Snyder and Martha Woodall INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
Despite the school district deficit, Mayor Street said yesterday he planned to move forward with a proposal to quadruple the number of parent truancy officers to get wayward students back in school. "Truancy in our system has run amok," Street said, referring to 32,000 students who are absent each day, many of them with no legal excuse. "I just don't see how we can pretend to have a system that's headed in the right direction if we have 32,000 children missing a day and no capacity to follow up on unexcused absences.
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.
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