Mother returns to jail over truancy

A mother who was jailed in May 2002 for allowing her two daughters
to truant is back in prison.

Patricia Amos was sentenced at Bicester Magistrates Court last week
to 28 days’ imprisonment for allowing her daughter Jacqueline to
miss school. The teenager had a 60 per cent attendance rate.

Amos was previously jailed in 2002 for allowing Jacqueline and her
elder daughter Emma to truant.

But Gill Loughran, deputy chief executive at Parentline Plus, said
the second conviction showed that prison “can’t have worked”.

She said the charity’s experience was that there were often
complicated reasons as to why children do not go to school and she
would rather see those issues unravelled and addressed by giving
parents help rather than punishing them.

Oxfordshire Council’s education officer Barry Armstrong defended
the move, pointing out that Emma had increased her attendance at
school from 30 per cent to 90 per after the 2002 case.

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