Bill would give parents relief in truancy cases

May 3, 2011 12:05:04 PM PDT
The Texas Senate approved a bill that would make it harder for parents to be prosecuted for contributing to a child's truancy. The unanimous vote Tuesday would end the current practice of charging parents with criminal negligence. Instead, it requires parents be proven to "intentionally" contribute to their child's nonattendance.

This change ensures that parents not only know their children aren't at school, but are actively influencing or causing the absences.

Houston Democrat John Whitmire called his bill a "common sense" approach to dealing with truancy. He argues that in some cases, a single parent is doing everything possible to get their child to school and shouldn't be punished for their child's actions.