Police cracking down on truancy across the city
Police are cracking down on truancy across Auckland in attempt to reduce crime.
The ‘‘major’’ police operation will see officers cruising the streets over the next two weeks, talking to young people skipping school.
Inspector David Glossop said while truancy itself is not a criminal offence, there is a correlation between truancy and youths being offenders, or victims of crime.
‘‘There is evidence to suggest that a small number of these children and teenagers are involved in criminal activity.
’’This can range from lower level offences to very serious crimes including burglary.’’
Police will be patrolling a number of locations where they know youths gather during school hours.
But it’s not just about decreasing crime stats, Glossop said, the crack down would also help support attendance and improve family life.
‘‘Parents and caregivers play a huge role in the future success of our tamariki and need to take responsibility for ensuring their children are actively involved in education,’’ Glossop said.
Police will work with the Ministry of Education and Truancy Service Providers, to identify those kids who are consistently not attending school and ‘‘wrap support around them and their families.’’
The Ministry of Education’s Katrina Casey said regular attendance at school made all the difference in a young person’s life.
‘‘Attending school is not just the law of the land up until the age of 16, it’s also the key to setting our young people up for life.’’
For example, Casey said, a Year 11 student who only turned up at school half of the time had just a one-in-five chance of getting NCEA Level 1.
‘‘A student who attends every day has about a 90 per cent chance of achieving that qualification.
‘‘That’s why it’s so important that we work together to support families with children that are skipping school and help them get back on track,’’ Casey said.
In 2016, truancy decreased by nearly 40 per cent in parts of Auckland following a community drive to tackle the problem.
‘‘Attending school is not just the law of the land up until the age of 16, it's also the key to setting our young people up for life.’’
Police are cracking down on youths wagging school in Auckland.