Ministry of Education, Guyana

Monday, 21 November 2011 10:12

55 parents made court appearance for neglecting to educate their children

National Truancy Coordinator Yvonne Arthur has reported that some 55 parents have been placed before the court for neglecting to educate their children since the Education Ministry stepped up its truancy campaign last year.

Parents are placed before the court when they fail to send their children to school, despite assistance from government and other support agencies.

The Education Ministry has taken a decision to prosecute parents who have abandoned their responsibility to educate their children in a bid to send a clear message of its position on this matter. Child employers are also being targeted.

Reports from school welfare officers have indicated that poor parenting and parental neglect are the primary causes of truancy. The Schools Welfare Department has so far been able to place a number of children who never attended school in an institution of learning.

Arthur is called on headteachers to make available to the Schools Welfare Department the names of students who regularly absent from school, and stressed that a child can still be enrolled at a school, even though the latter does not have a birth certificate.

The former Chief Schools Welfare Officer explained that while the child is in school, the parent can be advised by a schools welfare officer on the way forward to acquire the legal document.

Education Minister Shaik Baksh had explained that his ministry is moving to prosecute negligent parents as efforts to talk to them on shouldering their responsibility have been futile.

He said the stern action has to be taken to ensure that every child attends school, receives a sound education and becomes a productive citizen in society.

The minister said too that the government is providing free uniform, text books and other forms of support to students, and all parents must honour their responsibility to support and educate their children.

The Human Services and Social Security Ministry’s Probation, Child Care and Social Security Departments also provide assistance to vulnerable children.


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