The Diversion Process
The diversion process begins with the initial efforts between student, family and school. Students and families who engage with school staff in an attempt to develop a plan to increase attendance have higher rates of changing the behavior. Therefore, early responses from parents when their child first begins to show signs of avoiding school is essential to increasing school attendance and therefore overall school success.
Youth under the age of 12 years old may be referred to Scott County Health and Human Services for unexcused absences equaling 7 or more school days. During that age it is important that parents realize they are determined as 100% responsible in assuring their children are enrolled and attending school.
Youth who are 12 years old through 17 years old may be referred to the County Attorney’s Office once their unexcused absences have reached 7 full school days and attempts to increase school attendance through collaboration with school staff have been unsuccessful.
Compulsory Attendance is the Law
Youth from the age of 7 years old through their 17th year are required to attend school.
Students and parents should be aware that once a truancy referral has been accepted by the County Attorney’s Office sanctions may be requested of the court including:
- Court adjudication as a "child in need of protection or services";
- Mandatory meetings with probation or social services;
- Community Service or Sentence to Serve (including weekends); Fines up to $100;
- Suspension or denial of driving privileges (to age 18);
- Counseling for child and parents;
- Chemical or mental health evaluations / services / programs;
- Any other activities or treatment programs deemed appropriate by the court, etc.).