AUG 01] WEST MIDLANDS POLICE NEWS
300 Children Caught In Truancy Swoop
major swoop on truants in Coventry has netted nearly 300
stay-away children across the city in the last few months.
Midlands Police, working in partnership with local schools and
the Education Welfare Service, have returned 279 children to
school during their two joint anti-truancy initiatives.
January 182 children were returned, with a further 97 being
returned in the second part of the initiative in June.
Lee Patterson, the beat manager for Longford, who co-ordinated
the initiative said:
extended the boundaries in this second initiative and stopped
191 children of school age. Those with unacceptable reasons
for not being at school - 97 in total - were taken back. We
also arrested four school age children, three for burglary and
one for theft, during the initiative in school hours.
schools were involved and the head teachers of these schools
gave us their full support. Some of those involved were not
regular truants, but had seen an opportunity to leave the
premises and had taken it; others had no intention of staying
Education Welfare Service is working with the head teachers to
evaluate these results and support the individuals involved in
the future so our determination to clamp down on truancy
should have a positive impact on the lives of those
initiatives took place in the Bell Green and Wyken areas of the
city and included both residential and shopping areas - it did
not include Coventry city centre.
inter-agency approach has ensured minimum loss to the regular
patrol time undertaken by officers, who are all based on the
sector, and who are committed to tackling nuisance crime often
committed by youngsters who play truant.
are possible links between truancy, anti-social behaviour and
crime. We hope that this operation will have an impact on
these problems and increase the quality of life for people
living in the communities we serve."
George Duggins, cabinet member of education services, said:
partnership between the police and the Education Welfare
Service in tackling truancy is going from strength to
strength. The latest initiative, which took place in Bell
Green, Foleshill, Radford and Wyken, proved very successful.
parent or carer of all pupils stopped during the initiative
was notified, raising the awareness of the importance of their
children being in school. Absence from school denies children
an education, which will eventually have an adverse impact on
their future. The aim of the partnership is to work even more
closely with schools, looking at developing an ongoing
programme targeting pupils who are absent from school without