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US The father of a seventh grader said his son was threatened with arrest after missing three Zoom sessions

23:55  22 october  2020
23:55  22 october  2020 Source:   cnn.com

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A seventh-grader in California was threatened with arrest after missing three Zoom classes, his father says.

Mark Mastrov says his son can become a truant of California because he missed several remote classes. © Mark Mastrov Mark Mastrov says his son can become a truant of California because he missed several remote classes.

Mark Mastrov says he recently received a letter from Stanley Middle School in Lafayette, California, saying that his son had been absent for more than 30 minutes on three occasions without a valid excuse.

And under California law, the letter reads, that means his son is considered a truant.

"He can become a truant of the state and he could be arrested," Mastrov told CNN affiliate KGO-TV. "I said, 'Are you going to come and try to arrest my son at my home, or fine me for not getting him to his Zoom class perfectly on time everyday?'"

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The letter states that because the boy is now classified as a truant, the school district is required to inform his parents that they could be prosecuted if they don't compel their son to attend school -- and that their son could potentially be subject to arrest.

Stanley Middle School Principal Betsy Balmat said that the district was obligated to send the notice due to a new California law that requires school governing boards to adopt a plan for attendance amid virtual learning.

"The letter is part of our responsibility to the state for our student attendance review boards," Balmat told KGO-TV. "As always, the schools have a responsibility to ensure students are engaged and learning."

CNN has reached out to Balmat for comment.

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California is notorious for strict truancy laws that some parents see as extreme or unforgiving.

Under its penal code, a parent whose child misses more than 10% of a school year without a valid excuse could be subject to a fine of up to $2,000 and/or up to a year in jail.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Mark Mastrov. © KGO Mark Mastrov.

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usr: 10
This is interesting!