Making your child go to school: teenager’s chaotic lifestyle and parent’s inability to control not a defence to prosecution – Education Law Blog

Posted May 13th, 2013 in interpretation, news, parental responsibility, school children by tracey

“As all education lawyers know, the parent of a child who fails to attend school regularly commits a criminal offence punishable by a fine of up to £1000 (section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996). If the parent knows her child is failing to attend school and fails to cause her to do so, the ‘aggravated’ form of the offence (section 444(1A)) is committed which is punishable by a fine of up to £2500 and/or up to 3 months’ imprisonment. One of the statutory defences to both charges is that the child was prevented from attending ‘by reason of sickness or any unavoidable cause’ (section 444(2A)). It is a defence to the aggravated charge to prove reasonable justification for the failure to cause the child to attend (section 444(1B)).”

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Education Law Blog, 10th May 2013