How would you feel if you faced a fixed penalty fine if your kids were consistently late for school? That day might not be far off – Staffordshire County Council has outlined new guidelines which will see parents fined if kids are persistently late.
Getting the kids to school on time is a challenge, there's no doubt about it. Everyone, even the most organised mums I know, have days where everything just goes wrong in the morning and the kids end up being late for school. It's virtually unavoidable, if you ask me.
After all, it only takes one wrong move for your carefully-constructed morning routine or school run schedule to fall apart. You accidentally sleep in, someone loses their school shoes AGAIN or you end up stuck in traffic and, before you know it, you're frantically trying to beat the clock – at the same time as resigning yourself to the fact that the kids are going to be late for school. AGAIN.
But the Daily Mail reports:
A crackdown on pupil absence will see parents issued with fixed penalty notices if their child is late ten times in a 12-week period. If they do not pay up within 21 days the fine will double to £120 per parent, per child, and court action could follow if the fine remains unpaid. Previously, parents only faced a fine if their child received 20 unauthorised late marks over a 12-week period.
That said, I think I'd be ok with this, if my child's school decided to adopt it as a policy. My kids aren't persistently late so I don't think I'd be troubled by it, but I appreciate that school life is seriously disrupted by kids who turn up late day after day.
We'd love to hear your views on this. Would you welcome fines like this or do you think it's unfair and Draconian to fine parents when kids are late for school?