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Should parents be fined for not sending their children back to school?

There is a ‘moral imperative’ for children to return to classes, School Standards Minister Nick Gibb said.

Fines for parents who refuse to send their children to England’s schools will only be used as a “last resort” as classes resume after the coronavirus shutdown.

Preparations for the return of England’s schools come with Education Secretary Gavin Williamson under intense pressure following the fiasco over the awarding of A-level grades.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has led calls for parents to send their children back to class and the UK’s chief medical officers have said youngsters are more at risk of long-term harm if they do not attend school than if they return.

Mr Gibb acknowledged that some parents would still have concerns but stressed that education was compulsory and fines could be used if necessary.

“Fines for non-attendance have always been a last resort for headteachers and schools,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today.

“What matters is that young people are attending school.

“We live in a country where education is compulsory and I think parents can be reassured that the measures that schools are taking to make sure that we minimise the risk of the transmission of the virus are very effective.”

Local authorities can fine parents £120 – cut to £60 if paid within 21 days – over a child’s absence from school.

What are your views?  Do you have any family members who are concerned about sending their children back to school? 

Should parents be fined for not sending their children back to school?

373 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

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Ebell
4th Sep 2020
0
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Learning is very important. But there needs to be alternatives to the “old school way” Educational administrators need to consult teachers on how to go about accomplishing these alternatives. Educators need ti think outside the box!! We are in a pandemic . Things are not the same and may never be again. Rather than punishing parents they should find a new way to get student learning gains Governments should immediately change the funding formulas and give schools equal funds for virtual and face to face students. After all it is the tax payers money supporting schools
Schools should think of the different ways to spend that money. Instead of transportation, instead of text books, instead of buildings and cleaners for those buildings. Administrators need ti think of virtual ways to reach and provide educational services to their students. Parents could form learning groups with rotating parents supervising computer learning. There are so many great things that can come from change. Lets not punish first.
Ebell
4th Sep 2020
0
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In America, Covid us still spiking. Schools are open. Students are offered online learning or face to face. There is no reason to stop learning. Except, because of spikes, parents keep their students home for a week. When 5 days have passed, they send then back to face to face. This stop and start is very disruptive to students learning. It would be better to teach all students online until a vaccine and/or a cure is found.
Irene88
4th Sep 2020
0
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They have already missed almost 5 months of teaching. without taking into account the mental wellbeing whic is just as important as their education. My sister in law has been working in school throughout the lockdown with key workers children and that hasn't been a problem. Sometimes parents cause their children more stress than necessary.
Lionel
27th Aug 2020
2
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If we truly believe Covid 19 has been and still is, as bad as the government trumpeted then why would we send our children into peril?

Servicemen are shot for cowardice in the face of the enemy. What punishment does the State propose for parents not wanting their kids to be pawns in what has been declared as a war?
Ebell
4th Sep 2020
0
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Nannypink
27th Aug 2020
0
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Concerned parents should be given a tour of their child’s school to see the measures that will be in place but the children’s needs should come first and if they want to go back then they should
Ebell
4th Sep 2020
0
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I agree. Many times the school tour shows the oarent what the school wants them to see. But, then because of necessities. Things change. Where there was 10 student desks it becomes 25 and social distancing disappears. Students can not be supervised every minute, so masks come down, close contact happens. Parents should not have to risk their child’s health on impossible situations.
Munsterlander
27th Aug 2020
2
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No No No as Mrs T would have said. This is a free country and many people will be worried about sending their kids back to school.
SandyP4
27th Aug 2020
3
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It should be the parents who are responsible for their families well being have the final say . If they feel uncomfortable or the return to school puts the child and family at risk then they should decide. I would like to know how the teachers are to stop kids being kids especially those who are 6 and under from greeting friends and being socially distant.
Ebell
4th Sep 2020
0
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Well said. Many students today are social through interactive computer games. Using these “safe” platforms to continue friendships and socializing.
Lavabread
27th Aug 2020
2
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Fines are not the only answer, majority of teachers know their pupils well. Those parents should be invited to the schools in question and allow them to see the measures that have been taken to safeguard the children & the staff. Verbal engagement is far better, I’m sure they would have had the experience of the past months teaching their children!
Tr1sh
26th Aug 2020
1
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I know several teachers who are reluctant to return to the classroom next month, I wonder if they will be fined 🙂
Ebell
4th Sep 2020
0
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I am one of these teachers. Ni, we weren’t fined; just forced to resign ir retire rather than risk Covid.
Rosedeb
25th Aug 2020
3
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Why does everything have to result in a fine, most parents I know can't wait to get the kids back to svhool, is the fine an effort to recoup some of the wasted money ie eat out for less??? Those of us who have worked through this pandemic are paying for this - plus taxes are probably going to be increased, will we be exempt from rises ? Think not
viking
31st Aug 2020
0
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The use of fines surely is a more civilised way of dealing with members who have strayed off the path. This is much more preferable to what could happen in certain "democraces " today with a good beating and jail sentence.
viking
24th Aug 2020
6
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Not too sure about the law in this country, but thought that parents in most areas could be fined anyway, for not sending their children to school.
Wilf
25th Aug 2020
1
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It looks like that is what will happen Viking
olivep
26th Aug 2020
1
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parents would be fined for not sending their children to school anyway - so lets get them back.
We should not let this virus take over our lives more than it has done.
All the children we know want to go back.
MrsPat
24th Aug 2020
5
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Children need to go back to school and the virus does not seem to affect them but what about their parents and grandparents like us?
Wilf
24th Aug 2020
7
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Certainly not! This is a free country in the current circumstances. What if there are vulnerable people in kids' families or at home?
JE
25th Aug 2020
3
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I take your point, but many of these school age children are already out and about in the community now, often mixing with others including vulnerable family members. At least In schools they will be in “bubbles” and with certain Covid measures in place. Same applies to adults who are going out to work now and are also in contact with their more vulnerable family members.
It’s not ideal I agree but as it looks like Covid will be with us for some time, we will have to learn to live with it and I believe it’s vital that children continue their education. If they do not go to school how will they get their education?
It always has been the case that education is compulsory and parents could be fined for not sending their children to school.
Wilf
25th Aug 2020
1
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I agree to a point JE and the only good part is the kids do not seem to be affected by it. It is a real catch 22 though as reports are saying when the children all go back to school cases could flare up again.

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