Springfield Schools Cracking Down on Truancy


SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Officials with Springfield Public Schools are launching an initiative aimed at cracking down on truancy.

Azell Cavaan, spokesperson for Springfield Public Schools, says that around 7:30 a.m. Friday, school safety officers, Springfield Police officers, and members of the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department fanned out across the city to areas that officials identified as “hot spots” for truant students.

Those that were identified as Springfield Public School students were then directed onto a bus and taken to school.

As a result of Friday’s initiative, Cavaan explains that more than 100 students are being counseled, their parents are being contacted, and corrective plans will be put in place.

The goal, school officials say, is to crack down on students that arrive after the bell because they hang out with friends during the morning hours, as well as those students who are out of school during school hours without a legitimate reason.

“We’re very pleased with the results today, which is another approach that we have included in our already aggressive Attendance and Truancy policies. We absolutely will not tolerate kids on the street during school hours,” Superintendent Daniel Warwick explains in a statement released Friday.

Springfield Schools say that their truancy rate has dropped from 5.4 percent in 2010 to 3.8 this year. At the same time, attendance this year is at 92.2 percent, up from 90.4 percent in 2010.

Warwick is urging members of the public to call the school district’s truancy hotline if someone sees school-aged children out of school during school hours. Those reports can be called in to (413) 348-6458 between 7:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. weekdays or (413) 787-7183 after school hours.

“These kids are back in class where they ought to be and we are giving them the support they need to help them and their families ensure they get to school on time every day. The message students should hear loud and clear is that there is no hiding place. Go to school and be on time,” says Warwick.

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  • medic3

    Fine the parents. Take it right out of their EBT cards. If they haven’t got a handle on the little brats, take the kids away. Problem isn’t always the kid, it’s lousy parenting more often than not. PD and the Sheriff’s Dept should not be parenting or bringing these kids to school.

  • alpinequeen

    In 2008, 12,000 kids were ticketed for truancy in Los Angeles where elementary school truancy has become a crisis. Truancy levels have come down but with increased population, those numbers do not reflect the real problem. Truant students won’t be able to find jobs, may continue dealing drugs as adults and will become a drain society as a whole. A new set of parameters is needed to deal with this problem.

  • Jloenlacasa

    Heres also a problem with Springfield …..my daughter has emotional issue as well as has several issues with other students bullying her…insteada of nipping it in the bud she is sent home several times a week w/o suspension….quote to give her a break….it is ridulous 19 days missed last year bc she was sent home 19 times with and iep

  • HonestABElincoln

    Channel 40: Will you PLEASE FIX THIS WEBSITTE? For days now when you hit the “reply to xxxxxxx” it instead replies to anonymous (bottom of the page) or to a completly different post. That’s why this site looks like people are talking to themselves, or making no sense.
    Of course the first post at the top WAS written by an apparent idiot, so that one gets chalked up to stupidity or poor writing because it makes no sense at all.

    • alpinequeen

      And the winner for the best rant of the day goes to honest Abe.

  • HonestABElincoln

    You think that’s racist Benny? Look at another thread where that JO Rick Paquette called Obama a “hlafrican”, and you can see how deep hate and racism go in this country.

    • HonestABElincoln

      Sorry, it was “halfrican” he called him. Internet racists who would never dare say that to your face.

      • alpinequeen

        Nice of you to point out the obvious.