Viewpoint: March 10, 2010

It appears that holding parents accountable for the actions of their children is showing positive results when it comes to truancy. For the past year, the district attorney's office in East Baton Rouge Parish has been summoning parents and their children to truancy workshops.

Once a child has five or more unexcused absences, their parents get a notice. And to avoid a possible $250 fine or 30 days in jail, parents are making the wise choice to attend these mandatory meetings.

The DA's office reports that in many cases, parents were unaware their children were missing so much school. This "get tough" approach seems to be working. For the 12-month period that ended in January, truancy is down 40 percent in East Baton Rouge.

We urge law enforcement, teachers, school officials, parents and their children to continue this effort. We all benefit when our children are in school.