Truancy mum given suspended sentence

A MOTHER from St Neots has received a suspended prison sentence after magistrates heard her two children had attended school for less than 12 per cent of lessons. The woman, who can not be named for legal reasons, was told by Huntingdon magistrates on Thu

A MOTHER from St Neots has received a suspended prison sentence after magistrates heard her two children had attended school for less than 12 per cent of lessons.

The woman, who can not be named for legal reasons, was told by Huntingdon magistrates on Thursday that she faces jail unless she makes sure her children attend school.

The mother admitted failing to ensure the regular school attendance of two of her five children. The court heard that the two children, both at senior school, had attendance rates of 11 per cent and seven per cent.

Their mother, who has a previous conviction for a similar offence, had failed to attend several meetings at the school, despite being made aware of her children's poor school attendance and had failed to respond to offers of support from the school's education welfare officer.


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The parent was already in breach of a community order when magistrates imposed a two-month prison sentence, suspended for nine months.

After the case, Martin Smith, Cambridgeshire County Council's school attendance manager, said: "This case sends out a very clear message that non-school attendance will be treated by the courts as a very serious matter. Children have a right to their education and the county council will seek to ensure that this right is protected.

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