My son is 16, and he has truancy charges on him. I am so upset! I am mad at him for not going; I am mad at myself for failing him. We live in Alabama. What can I expect?
Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. What to expect with truancy charges?
They’re against him or you? In my state the parents get the charges
You go to court and you pay a fine
Parents are charged in Florida
My mom dealt with truancy charges with me when I was little (I had a multitude of health issues that we were working on, biggest one being ulcerative colitis) and she ended up having to pay a fine- I think it was $500-600. The judge was completely unsympathetic and the school district only accepted 3 doctors notes per year even though I had chronic illnesses. This was ~15 years ago in WI.
When I went to school I went to court with my mom. They asked why I didn’t go to school then put me on probation and I had to pay a fine
Parents are charged here in PA, but my fiancé made his daughter set up a payment plan and pay for it cause she had a part time job at 16 when she got her truancy
It really depends on what state you’re in and how your county handles truancy. I worked in one county where the kids go to truancy court and have to pay a small fine but they have to perform community service. Judge decides how much. Other areas of our state will find that the parent is responsible for charges. They figure if the parents are fined or are sent to jail for not participating in truancy court- if you make the parents pay fines or put parents in jail for contempt, that they will start to make sure their child makes it to school on time.
MI parents are charged. Cps can get involved sometimes…if they do they’ll claim Neglect (educational) can cause a lot of issues.
I got into trouble with truancy. I walked out of high school and never went back (I was in an accident in 7th grade) had a traumatic brain injury and brain bleed.
I ended up being overwhelmed with homework. I begged the teachers for help and they said I was using my accident as a way to slack off. So I said forget it.
My mom even told them I was still healing. They didn’t care. So my mom enrolled me in GED classes… I passed all but math. And when I went to take my math test again, CO changed the age from 16 to 17 to drop out.
So my mom found a credible high school online so I could get my HSD, and the courts refused to accept it. Completely legit. They threatened my mom with a fine and charges and to throw me in Juvie (at this time I had 3 months till I turned 17) and so my mom stuck me in an alternative learning center. The day I turned 17, my mom withdrew me and enrolled me back into GED.
I’m 32 now and still have truancy on my criminal record.
Where I live if they miss 1 class we are called. How does your kid miss that much an you not know it
It’s Alabama lol. Alabama sucks.
But also, why are you not making him go to school?
Go to court in my state i had to attend an I had to do school for at least 6months straight or I couldn’t establish a permit
Parents are charged in NC…I know someone that got a $250 fine and 6 months unsupervised probation…
What …??? So you pay to go to the school but also pay if you don’t go …. That sounds crazy to me … that would never happen in aus lol
What should you expect? To marry your cousin? Or is that West Virgina? Idk either way good luck mama kids are a whole mess and being a mom is a whole job
I had to spend the weekend in DT
My mom had to pay a fine and I had to do community service when I was in middle school.
I worked in the attendance office and wrote my own notes.
A fine and s court date
They might put him on probation
I thought at 16 you can quit school have that changed
It depends the state but my sister had this happen with her and her kids her son refused to get up get dressed and with her having no car she had no way to get him there…he/ they were out on probation…still didn’t matter to him/ her he still refused to go to school…dss was involved and then her other child got sick and spent alot of time in Winston bring their by his side as he had multiple surgeries and learned to re walk…talk…and everything again at age 10 and later died 2 yrs later from his battle with brain cancer and thinking that was a good enough excuse for the school and judge and dss to cut her slack 2 weeks after the death of her middle child dss took her other 2 kids and placed them in their dad’s care who has made very sure both kids and the other 6 kids he has are in school daily…and eventually got dss out…and the constant court dates and everything but for my sister her letting her son run everything and be in charge without any fight hesitation or demands for him to obey she lost all her kids and isn’t doing so well her spiral downwards was very very fast…and this was when her child was 12 and it went on for over a 3 yrs before her kids were taken and the reason was she was considered unfit…and neglecting their needs by not having them in school…so here school is a necessary things and not getting your kid in school is neglect and they consider you unfit to provide the child’s needs…but every state and every situation is different and your willingness to do whatever the judge asks ( my sister and her child had things they were asked to do and didn’t) and do your best to show both your efforts…but it’s all depends on the situation and the details and your guys effort to make it right the best you can…I personally seen what shrugging it off as unimportant and not willing to do what you need to do first hand and it’s something I wouldn’t want any parent to go through having their child taken esp if your a good parent and it’s not just laziness… research in your area and maybe reach out to people local and see their experience… personally my only experience with truancy and court wasn’t so great but my sister didn’t and wasn’t doing her job as a parent …I get the time my sister struggled with her other child in the hospital but she has her mom staying with her( same dad different mom’s) and her mom was the same if Brayden didn’t wanna go …that was fine…and so neither of the 2 kids in the home went…day after day…so it wasn’t as if she didn’t have someone able to help…just someone over ran by the child and caused this…so I really do blame my sister situation and experience on pure laziness on all accounts…so please don’t be lazy minded and shrug it off as unimportant…it could totally change your world if not done right …good luck momma…
In Iowa you can get fined or face jail time depending on how much they miss
Just went thru this with my 16 year old son. Was not contacted by the school until I found court papers on door, went in front of judge (with court appointed lawyer) had to file Letter of Intent to Homeschool with school/school board for my school district. As long as all paperwork was turned in within timeframe judge set truancy charges were dropped. I live in Virginia so our laws may be different from Alabama. The paperwork I had to submit was
- Letter of Intent to Homeschool
- A copy of my High school Diploma
- A copy of the Curriculum he would be using.
Best of luck to you
Was you not notified he was missing school?
My sister pulled this crap and my mom called the cops. Sis ended up getting escorted to school
I don’t know much personally. But my ex’s brother and sister in law got their kids taken (finally- they did drugs). But took too many lates/absents for cps to get involved. So sad because the boy already had mental disabilities of some sort. Grandpa took him in till he passed then grandma. So its possible cps will get involved just to check in.
You’ll get fined first , and then he’ll have a chance to have better attendance and if he misses anymore he can get sent off and you can go to jail. I had a friend at 16 this happened to she kept skipping school and her mom went to jail and she got sent to a group home
I just had to fight one as they said my son was gone 10 days. They are allowed 11 for the whole year. My son missed 10 days due to covid they said he has exposure and had to stay home. We had to sit down with the “officer” and wrote up a plan so he doesn’t miss anymore school this is in Oregon
So … you could get fined or go to jail. It depends on the judge and your circumstances.
I get it! I leave the house at 0550 and get home around 8pm four days a week. My kid pulls the same stuff. I am at work and can’t leave. What can we do?! So dam frustrating!! Damned if we do, damned if we don’t.
You’ll go to court, be ordered to make sure he goes to school, and go back to court in 3 months I was on it for six months in Oklahoma. I was 17. The last time I went to court the judge said it would be my last time because my 18th birthday fell before the next court date. My principal seriously argued that I needed to stay. I looked at him and the judge and said I was going to drop out. The judge stared. The principal was like see. Then the judge charged my mom with aiding and abetting a minor and that came with a $200 fine and I told him she wasn’t paying that. The look on his face was pure shock and everyone else’s matched. I said I’d pay it on our way out. And true to my word I did. I did drop out. Not because I didn’t want an education but because I had no choice but to work 40 hours a week. Later I went to college.
I’m going through this right now. Meeting on Monday. My daughter will be getting a citation. She will have to pay. It’s definitely changed since I was in high school! She’s got 3 months until she graduates.
In TX, parents are solely responsible. There’s court dates, court fees, parenting classes, the whole 9. Aside from probably failing the 9wks, or a semester, nothing really happens to the kids. Actually, some kids with really bad truancy can get community service, at the judges discretion.
When I was younger, I had to go to court for truancy and they were really firm about me going to school and not missing anymore days. They also made my mom pay like $190 in fines.
My oldest son was 15 n refused 2 get up n go 2 school. He was already on juvenile probation so I called his probation be officer n explained I couldn’t exactly yank him by the ear n force him 2 get up. He came down n did get my son up n off 2 school. My youngest daughter was not on any probation but I had 2 go 2 truancy hearings 3 times bcuz I had 2 leave early 4 work n the kids were responsible for getting themselves up n off 2 school
Push for HIM to do community service. You could end up having to sit in jail one day for it. But the judge should go for making him pay for his hard head with community service
I don’t even get how you can get any of that right now with covid my sons have missed quite abit but when they do we contact the teacher and get work for them to do
That’s messed up I left school at 14 due to bullying was forced to go back and do 2 classes a day to get my core qualifications instead of the normal 6 classes until I was 15 then I went to college then quit when I turned 16 also due to bullying this is the norm in Scotland
Damn in Canada they would never this is crazy!! Just for not going to school?? Damn I would think other things would be more important than a kid who wishes to ruin his life…the having to register for home school and parents being responsible to ensure its done??? That BS
In the state of Florida some counties suspend the parents driver license. The government sees it as your child your responsibility.
At 16 its legal for students to drop out with parent consent so typically truancy charges dont stick.
Wow thats insane that happens to yous. Here in Canada that doesn’t happen. My little girl has missed a lot of school due to her sleep schedule(she has Autism and the Autism doesnt love sleep). Nothing has ever came from it.
What county do you live in. I live in Alabama as well. I can better answer your question knowing what county you are having to deal with. Each county handles truancy different. Some counties are more strict than others. It deepends your county. Most counties here start with early truancy program. Thats where you go in front of truant officer and or judge. They’ll ask why child has missed so many days then proceed to tell you if child misses any more then the child and you will be held in contempt of a court order. Then if you miss more days against the judges order you and child if over 13 yr old yall will both be locked up for 5 days. Parent goes to jail child goes to juvenile. I know in cullman county if you get put in truancy they have officers that come to your home and do regular home visits on the child and if truancy continues they lock both you and the child up. And in haileyville if a child continues to miss days after being placed in early warning truancy they challenge your parenting and can have your child removed from your home and custody. I am not trying to scare you, i am just telling you my personal experiences. And before someone comes on here saying no they dont take your child away from you. Well let me tell you, my cousin is fight to keep her custody of her children as we speak. So if I knew what county you are in I could help you better to know what to expect.
Pretty much YOU have truancy charges. You are responsible for making sure he goes to school and they will hold YOU accountable.
When I was in high school, many many years ago in pa, I had to go to truancy court and they released my mother of all charges. I had to walk to the courthouse every Friday to report any days I missed each week and if any days missed weren’t for good reason I would be responsible for any fines, I never skipped another day of school or class and my mom was not held responsible at all. Hope it works out that way for you.
Just homeschool him better than dealing with all this
Aren’t truancy charges on the parent not the child? I think you have truancy charges, not him.
Make sure he listens to the judge and goes to school this time or he will do time in Juvie like I did learnt hard way
I know kids who missed didn’t go to school most of last year. Went a few weeks then stopped going again. Nothing happens to them or their parents. It seems like they pick & choose who to charge.
Every area is different. You should be able to google your districts truancy laws & proceedings.
WHY isn’t your son wanting to go to school? What is going on at the school via students/teachers making him not want to be there? At 16, I’ll bet that boy is damn near as big as you are, kinda hard to attempt to force them to do anything at that point. It’s not like you can pick his happy ass up and carry him in kicking and screaming. Have you entertained the idea of different education for him such as virtual or other alternative options, better tailored for his needs? Even school of choice option for another district. I went through something similar for years with my oldest because she missed a lot of school due to her anxiety. It would get so bad, she would start violently vomiting and having to stay home. Found out from her friends some of the stuff that was going on. We made the decision to transfer her to another district and she was allowed to do her schooling virtually, at her own pace. She started out this year 11th grade, we transferred her in September & she ended up graduating a year and a half early 1/18/22. If he’s putting up that big of a fight about going, that leads me to think there is something deeper going on. They’ve sent me truancy letters for my youngest too (she has a suppressed immune system, & there have been days where we were literally turned away at the door & she had to come back home). I told 'em straight up that they can’t have their cake and eat it too. That’ll be the same thing I say in court, if it gets to that point as well.
They can put u in jail also. Of they find u are not helping they can sentence u. They normally will sentence them to however many days they missed to juvy or a foster home. My mom was truancy officer. I had to go to this place called Rainbow in NC for it . I stayed for 2 months . Many there r not orphans they r there for things like truancy and minor offenses . If he has a clean record it will be somewhere like that if not Juvy. Community service and probation 4 sure. Curfew also .
It’s going to differ from state to state. In south carolina after my first truancy charge at 15, I was put on probation. At 16, i quit going altogether and then was served and had to go back to court. I was sentenced to 3 months in Juvie for truancy, violation of probation and contempt of court. My mom’s fine was dropped from $2500 to $250. My circumstances were different though. I was kept from going to school
My ticket was $50 or community service back in 2011 in Oklahoma. Mine was also one count.
He’ll get probation and you’ll pay fines. Always make sure he has doctor note for everything. If he continues he’ll get juvenile.
When the child turns 13 is goes to the child’s responsibility. I had to go to a meeting because my son didn’t turn in his dr’s excuses and they give warning at 3-5 unexcused abcences. The way they explained it you or if child is 13+ in front of the judge and they will be put on probation. We live in Alabama also
Fines and jail if you don’t show up for school and people think we are actually free in America:rofl: dumbest thing ever.
the judge will ask why he’s missing school if it’s a good enough answer then nothing if not hell probably go to a group home
We got a fine which my son did community service for at the school to pay it …
Look up your state regulations. As a senior in high school I got this but was sent to the school superintendent for a hearing where I was reinstated and couldn’t miss another day of school or I’d be expelled and couldn’t graduate. But it could be very different in your state. Reach out to the school board if need be to figure out what your options are
Not sure about the laws there, but I know in Wisconsin if the fines aren’t paid by the time the child is 18, the fines then become the responsibility of the child/new adult to pay them instead of the parents.
What I’d like to know is how this happens. So your saying if I drop my child off at school, and they take off after I leave, isn’t the parent called that day? Maybe school system is part blame? Should we as parents sit beside them in class? Is school not responsible for child at all during school hours after child is dropped off? Maybe home school is best option. And maybe child should be held accountable for his/her choices. Instead of fines THEY work off fines under police department in the community. They learn nothing if parents take the punishment.
If first offense probably probation if happens again they will give you a fine
The parents get spanked here
I spent three years in JH for it back in the 60s…
What does living in Alabama got to do with anything?
I’m sure the school informed you of your son missing or being late for school. Your son did wrong. And maybe you should keep up with his school behavior. I used to get a call from the school if my kids was absent that day, and or I had to have a meeting with the principal or counselors wanting to know why my child is late for school. Sometimes we had to go to a early warning truancy program. I’m sure Alabama schools are no different from any other states schools. If you don’t like Alabama then you are free to move to any other states you choose to.
I live in mobile Alabama, and I love it here.
My nephew had this in tn. Parents had to pay a fine and he had to do community service. He went on to join the army and is now a police officer.
I had to go with my mom. I was pregnant my senior year and missed a lot due to dr appointments/being sick. They didn’t do anything but talk about my grade in math needing to improve. It might just be a warning, but this was in Ohio
Idk what you should expect. But I got my ged 1 month after I turned 16, I had already been expelled from school for 5 months by then. And I went on with my life. Started working full time and figured out my career path to go back to school by 18 when everyone was graduating.
I know it doesnt help with what to expect, but I would think about this as moving forward.
ETA, my mom did not care and luckily I while being a sh!thead had a good head on my shoulders in other ways. Maybe just discuss these options with him and support him if that’s what he thinks might be better for him
I was in trouble for truancy and my brothers as well. Unfortunately they come down harder on the parents than anything I mean this was years ago so it might be different now. But at the time my brothers got removed from our home and had to live with my dad . I was of age to decide where I wanted to live. So in return to our truancy my mom lost custody of my brothers. Oh and I remember the judge saying if I didn’t go to school they’d send a police officer to escort me everyday if necessary. Thankfully that never happened. This was in Michigan a long time ago though. Oh!! And my mom had to take parenting classes and I had to take some class for “rebellious teens” and complete that.
A child found guilty of truancy could wind up in a juvenile facility or in long term residential care. If the person who has custody is prosecuted for truancy that person could face a year of jail time, a fine of ip to 500 or both.
Some of these answers are so far off base. If he’s never been in trouble he will be fine, YOU as his parent go advocate for your son and tell them it’ll never happen again. Or just say he was feeling I’ll and was on his way home.
Where I live, we do not get calls if our kids miss school. I would be more worried about how you did not know though? No homework, no report card, etc.
Your son is old enough to accept what ever the consiquences that will come from this
Don’t beat yourself up
You haven’t done anything wrong
I was removed from my home and placed in foster care then a long term facility. At the time, I didn’t understand it. I just didn’t want to go to school and my parent wasn’t pushing it. I was around 10.
The school will request a DYS case be opened. We call it “Family in need of services” here. You will most likely go in front of a judge and he will scold your teenager. If you did not contribute to his truancy you aren’t going to get in trouble. He will most likely get a probation officer and will have a set of rules to follow. It is not the end of the world, it just gets another set of eyes to ensure education compliance.