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  1. #1
    cahnch8 is offline Junior Member
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    Missing School Days

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? New Jersey

    Our school district states that of 180 school days, 160 must be attended. My child has already missed 12.5 days this year when in her Mother's custody. 8 of them just in the last 2 months. I cannot control this. What are the repercussions should she miss more then the allowed 20 days of school?

    When I notice that homework is missing out of the agenda book my child lies and tells me that she forgot to write it down. When confronted with the knowledge that I knew she had missed school, she told me her Mother told her to lie to me if I ever asked about her missing days at school.
  2. #2
    summerdawn is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cahnch8 View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? New Jersey

    Our school district states that of 180 school days, 160 must be attended. My child has already missed 12.5 days this year when in her Mother's custody. 8 of them just in the last 2 months. I cannot control this. What are the repercussions should she miss more then the allowed 20 days of school?

    When I notice that homework is missing out of the agenda book my child lies and tells me that she forgot to write it down. When confronted with the knowledge that I knew she had missed school, she told me her Mother told her to lie to me if I ever asked about her missing days at school.
    Wow, they are allowed 20 days? Our kids are only allowed 10.
  3. #3
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Your daughter could be held back a year if she misses too much school. She could face truancy actions (which means the parents are brought into court as well). her grades could be lowered.
    How old is she?
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.
  4. #4
    cahnch8 is offline Junior Member
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    She is 8 and yes I am worried about her being held back or being called into court. She has never missed a day of school when I have her. Which in only Wed. nights.
  5. #5
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cahnch8 View Post
    She is 8 and yes I am worried about her being held back or being called into court. She has never missed a day of school when I have her. Which in only Wed. nights.
    You have her 1/5 of the time for school then. Look, the issue is you are still responsible for her schooling. You need to take steps to bring this to the court's attention and even attempt to get custody due to the missed school. Doing something AFTER you are brought into court for truancy is only going to show that both mom and dad were negligent.
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.
  6. #6
    cahnch8 is offline Junior Member
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    Ok great thank you. I am going to do that. Should I just call my local case worker and report it to her? I have an email from the teacher saying how many days she has missed. Also, I have been trying to get a copy of the report card that came out in February and yet still have to see one. I guess I need to make sure the school is sending home 2 copies of everything.
  7. #7
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ohiogal View Post
    You have her 1/5 of the time for school then. Look, the issue is you are still responsible for her schooling. You need to take steps to bring this to the court's attention and even attempt to get custody due to the missed school. Doing something AFTER you are brought into court for truancy is only going to show that both mom and dad were negligent.
    I am going to disagree with this advice.

    This child has missed only 12.5 days of school so far and is allowed to miss 20. (20 seems like a lot to me too, but if that's the rule, that's the rule)

    I am not at all sure that taking things to that level, this far into the school year, would gain him credibility with either the courts or social services. Why? because the child has not yet missed more than the allowable amount of time (she isn't even close yet)...and there is only a couple more months left until the end of the school year.

    Think about it? Even in my school district, which only allows 9 unexcused absences, I think that a court would not take dad very seriously if a child had missed only 12.5 days of school this far into the school year. Our schools wouldn't even get too riled up about it at the elementary level.

    He stated that the child has missed 8 days in the last two months. That means that in the whole first semester plus she missed only 4.5 days. I would be wanting to get to the bottom of why the child has missed 8 days in the last two months, prior to taking any kind of legal action.

    If something has changed in mom's life that is causing/contributing to the problem then that is one thing. If the child missed a week due to a serious illness and then has missed a few other days it may be a different story.
  8. #8
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by LdiJ View Post
    I am going to disagree with this advice.

    This child has missed only 12.5 days of school so far and is allowed to miss 20. (20 seems like a lot to me too, but if that's the rule, that's the rule)

    I am not at all sure that taking things to that level, this far into the school year, would gain him credibility with either the courts or social services. Why? because the child has not yet missed more than the allowable amount of time (she isn't even close yet)...and there is only a couple more months left until the end of the school year.

    Think about it? Even in my school district, which only allows 9 unexcused absences, I think that a court would not take dad very seriously if a child had missed only 12.5 days of school this far into the school year. Our schools wouldn't even get too riled up about it at the elementary level.

    He stated that the child has missed 8 days in the last two months. That means that in the whole first semester plus she missed only 4.5 days. I would be wanting to get to the bottom of why the child has missed 8 days in the last two months, prior to taking any kind of legal action.

    If something has changed in mom's life that is causing/contributing to the problem then that is one thing. If the child missed a week due to a serious illness and then has missed a few other days it may be a different story.
    You know what -- I will defer to this. You are looking at it better actually. He does need to find out why missed days happened in the last two months. Did the child have mono? Did the child skip/flick/cut/whatever they call it nowadays? Did the child ... well the question why does matter.
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.
  9. #9
    cahnch8 is offline Junior Member
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    My child is only 8. When asked about the missing days she told me that she did not go to school because they could not leave the house on time for her mom to drop her off and be able to get to work without being late. Keep in mind that babysitter lives on the same road as the school and you actually pass the school on the way to work from the babysitter. The babysitter is a must stop because she has another kid that does not attend school. My daughter is told that it is her fault they are late "for not getting ready fast enough" and was told to lie to me about the missing days. She used to tell me that she did go to school but just forgot to write the homework down. Until the teacher contacted me. The missed days have been coming more like 1x a week almost. There are also 8 "tardies" this year. Her grades in 2 classes have slipped from high A's to high C's and the homework book that is supposed to be signed every day only gets signed on Wed. when I have it.
  10. #10
    sad_dad1 is offline Junior Member
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    My response to this is based solely on experience, and not a legal opinion what so ever. I am not attempting to hi-jack this thread, but provide you with my experience for future prevention.

    I recently went through a relatively similar situation as you. My eldest child starting missing more and more school each year after i moved out of the house. The more that i complained about it, the more that everyone found ways around it.

    First, the ex and my eldest went to court and asked that she not have to spend nights with me anymore when school was in session (albeit none of her absences were when she was with me) the court allowed this.

    The following year her absences doubled for the year. I dealt with the school trying to find out why i was not being notified of these absences so that I could be more proactive. They could not answer my questions, instead they told me that since her grades were still good, there was nothing that they could do.

    Finally, this year, I attempted to get a handle on the situation as early as possible. in the first month of school she was up to 7 absences. she had 14 absences at the end of the first marking period. I called Child protective services hoping they could intervene, they told me the school had to start the process. I contacted the school and was told that since "mom" was writing excuses for her, they could not do anything because legally the absences were excused. the attendance policies only address un excused absences. I finally convinced the superintendant of schools to have a meeting to enable all parties to meet and find a way to get the child to school.

    At this meeting, my ex allowed my daughter to drop out of school. At our next court appearance I brought the matter to the judge at pre-trial and the law guardian lied to the judge and said i was on board with it and that my relationship was better with daughter as a result. This couldnt be farther from the truth. but because the law guardian said this, the judge didnt care that she dropped out. And the court didnt care about her attendance issues what so ever.

    With this being said, I apologize for being long winded, and if there is any legal avenue that might be available to you, I suggest that you do not hesitate at all, or else your daughter may eventually drop out of high school as well and there will be nothing that you can do about it.

    Again, I am not attempting to hijack your thread with my story, but hopefully you can learn from my situation and prevent it.

    Good luck, I sincerely hope that this helps.
  11. #11
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cahnch8 View Post
    My child is only 8. When asked about the missing days she told me that she did not go to school because they could not leave the house on time for her mom to drop her off and be able to get to work without being late. Keep in mind that babysitter lives on the same road as the school and you actually pass the school on the way to work from the babysitter. The babysitter is a must stop because she has another kid that does not attend school. My daughter is told that it is her fault they are late "for not getting ready fast enough" and was told to lie to me about the missing days. She used to tell me that she did go to school but just forgot to write the homework down. Until the teacher contacted me. The missed days have been coming more like 1x a week almost. There are also 8 "tardies" this year. Her grades in 2 classes have slipped from high A's to high C's and the homework book that is supposed to be signed every day only gets signed on Wed. when I have it.
    Dad, I absolutely understand your concerns. I truly do. The problem is that your child has not yet missed the max allowed, and you don't have a true "smoking gun" regarding why your child is missing school.

    What sounds like is happening is that mom has to be at work at a certain time, and is blowing off school for your child if they can't get out of the house in time for mom to get the child to school AND be to work on time. Its possible that mom is putting her job over the child's schooling. That's not necessarily a neglectful thing...it may be a reality thing.

    That's bad..absolutely, but its something that may work itself out over time...and its also something that your child may be contributing to.
  12. #12
    stealth2 is offline Senior Member
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    At 8, your daughter is certainly old enough to make sure she's ready to leave for school on time. Have you worked with her on how to choose clothes the night before and lay them out? Bought her an alarm clock if she isn't woken up on time? Suggetsed a shower/bath the night before? These are all reasonable things that you COULD do.
  13. #13
    CJane is offline Senior Member
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    Gawd, I NEVER remember to sign the homework book unless Unruly (the very recently 9 year old) is standing right there with it in her hand telling me to do it right now. It's just NOT a priority for me. BFD.

    You don't have the report card. You didn't know child was missing school until the teacher told you. You have no idea why the child is missing school because you're asking the CHILD and not the PARENT.

    How involved are you with the school? How involved are you with your child's education?

    I've walked in the NCP shoes... and I stay MORE INVOLVED than the CP. I email with the teachers of both my kids weekly at a minimum, call the school for info, check the website daily, attend every possible parent/teacher conference, take time out of work for activities during the day like band concerts and the Xmas play.

    Mom absolutely needs to make sure kiddo is getting to school the required 160 days. But what are YOU doing to ensure communication with the school?

    And really? How many of the days missed in the past 2 months were due to weather?
  14. #14
    penelope10 is offline Senior Member
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    How far do you live from your kiddo? If it is not too inconvenient, or out of the way, perhaps you could take her to school in the mornings. That way you are assured that she is making it to school on time. I know it's not your responsibility, but this could help alleviate future headaches such as going before a truancy court....

    I have a job that takes me an hour to get to work. I have to leave way before school even starts. I'm actually quite lucky because I have very good neighbors that live two doors down from me. They take Lil Bit to school on the days Dad does not have her. I just make sure she's up and getting ready before I leave.

    She catches a ride home with one of her very good friends when school is out.
  15. #15
    wileybunch is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJane View Post
    Gawd, I NEVER remember to sign the homework book unless Unruly (the very recently 9 year old) is standing right there with it in her hand telling me to do it right now. It's just NOT a priority for me. BFD.
    Obviously you don't love your child very much.

    I love that the schools have the kids using planners in elem. school. It's a good tool for them. But, what I don't love is that it's become this bible that we must all worship and sign homage to every weeknight INCLUDING signing for Friday -- when they aren't even supposed to HAVE homework on weekends. I've been tempted to get a stamp.

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