Partnership tackling school truants

PCSO Helen Halliday, PCSO Phil Raisbeck, education welfare officers Sarah Wintringham, Julie Malloy, Dawn Westerby and Julie Phimister.
PCSO Helen Halliday, PCSO Phil Raisbeck, education welfare officers Sarah Wintringham, Julie Malloy, Dawn Westerby and Julie Phimister.
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An operation to tackle truancy has been carried out by Police and Northumberland County Council.

Neighbourhood officers from Ashington teamed up with the council’s education welfare officers to sweep areas including Ashington, Newbiggin and Lynemouth to target known truants as well as carry out home visits for pupils who have poor attendance at school.

The activity forms part of Operation Community Pride – an ongoing initiative in Ashington and surrounding areas aimed at improving the quality of life for residents.

On Monday, officers carried out 24 home visits, stopped 16 people and arranged for five pupils to be returned to school.

Education welfare officers also made follow up enquiries with schools and parents.

Neighbourhood Inspector, Dave Harris, said: “We are pleased at the results of this operation and regularly carry out these type of operations with Northumberland County Council to safeguard young people.

“We know that children who regularly fail to attend school put themselves at risk of becoming involved in committing crime or disorder or becoming a victim of this themselves. We want to do all we can to prevent this happening. Returning truants to schools benefits their education and keeps them from harm.

“We are committed to continuing these joint truancy crackdowns throughout the year.”

Sarah Wintringham, education welfare officer, said: “This was an extremely successful operation which sends out a message to students staying away from school and the links to good partnership working within the county.”