On Thursday, October 4, Roseville Police Department youth service officers conducted a truancy sweep, visiting high school students who had cut several classes or whole days of school without a valid excuse. Forty students were cited for truancy. Officers also arrested one student and booked her into Placer County Juvenile Hall, because she was already on probation for truancy.
Last Thursday’s sweep was part of a continuing effort by the Roseville Police Department to encourage regular school attendance. During the month of September, the youth service officers cited 38 juveniles for truancy.
With few exceptions, state law requires all children between the ages of 6 and 17 to attend school. State law defines truancy as three or more unexcused absences from school.
The citations are being treated as warnings at this time. The Roseville Police Department’s counseling staff will call the parents of each of the cited students, to find out why the students are not attending school regularly, and to refer families to appropriate community resources. Many parents will be referred to The Parent Project, a parental skill-building class designed for parents of more challenging adolescents. Roseville Police Department counseling interns will follow up on the school attendance and behavior of each of the students. Students who continue to cut classes will then be referred to the local School Attendance Review Board (SARB), where more serious consequences may be ordered.
The legal penalties for truancy may include driver’s license suspension, probation, and community service. Community Services Sgt. Karl Dyer said, “We don’t want the process to go that far. Our goal is to confront the problem and help families solve school attendance issues early on.”
Parents in the Roseville Joint Union High School District are urged to call their schools’ attendance hotline promptly whenever their children are going to be absent. Parents are also encouraged to frequently monitor their students’ attendance and grades online, using their schools’ HomeLink website. Parents having difficulty getting their student to attend school or stay at school may also call Sgt. Dyer at 774-5052 for further information and assistance.