Senate Bill 404: Defines Habitual Truancy as Neglect

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Last Updated: March 5, 2013
Senate Bill 404: Defines Habitual Truancy as Neglect
Sponsors:
Senator Cookman, Senator Stollings, Senator Miller, Senator Williams, Senator Fitzsimmons, Senator Green and Senator Palumbo
Summary:

Senate Bill ("SB") 404 would define a child who is habitually absent from school without good cause to be a "neglected child." A similar bill, HB 2197 is moving through the senate.

HSLDA's Position:
Oppose.

Truancy laws are already adequate to handle absence from school and families should not be at risk of having their children taken away just for missing school. This would affect any family that wants to withdraw their child from school immediately but would risk “habitual truancy” if they chose not to abide by the 14 day waiting period in the homeschool law. HSLDA believes that any waiting period is unconstitutional.

Action Requested:

Please contact members of both the House and Senate Education Committees and give them the following messages in your own words:

“I am calling to oppose SB 404 (or for the House, HB 2197). SB 404/HB 2197 defines habitual school absences as a form of child neglect. This bill conflates truancy and neglect and allows for parents to be charged with neglect and possibly lose their children just because they are missing school. Truancy issues can often be the result of misunderstandings or miscommunication and escalating the issue to an accusation of neglect is unwarranted. Truancy should not be presumed to be neglect. This bill did not proceed last year after being studied and should not move forward this year. Please vote against SB 404/HB 2197.”

Please contact the members according to your last name below and also your own Delegate or Senator! To find out whom your senator or delegate is you can visit these links:

Find your Senator
Find your Delegate

If your last name begins with A–C, please contact these Delegates concerning HB 2197:
Delegate Mary M. Poling, Chair
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3265
E-mail: mary.poling@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Josh Stowers, Vice Chair
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3337
E-mail: josh.stowers@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Amanda Pasdon, Minority Chair
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3153
E-mail: amanda@amandapasdon.com

Delegate Linda Sumner, Minority Vice Chair
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3180
E-mail: linda.sumner@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Anthony Barill
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3173
E-mail: anthony.barill@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Jason Barrett
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3188
E-mail: jason.barrett@wvhouse.gov

If your last name begins with D–G, please contact these Delegates concerning HB 2197:

Delegate Denise L. Campbell
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3145
E-mail: denise.campbell@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Ron Fragale
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3102
E-mail: ron.fragale@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Tiffany Elizabeth Lawrence
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3152
E-mail: lawrencefordelegate@hotmail.com

Delegate David G. Perry
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3269
E-mail: d.perry@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Dave Pethtel
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3158
E-mail: dave.pethtel@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Ted Tomblin
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3297
E-mail: ted.tomblin@wvhouse.gov

If your last name begins with H–K, please contact these Delegates concerning HB 2197:

Delegate David Walker
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3135
E-mail: david.walker@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Larry A. Williams
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3160
E-mail: larry.williams@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Adam R. Young
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3352
E-mail: adam.young@wvhouse.gov

Delegate George Ambler
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3129
E-mail: george.ambler@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Jim Butler
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3199
E-mail: jim.butler@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Roy Cooper
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3119
E-mail: roy.cooper@wvhouse.gov

If your last name begins with L–O, please contact these Delegates concerning HB 2197:

Delegate Paul Espinosa
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3130
E-mail: paul.espinosa@wvhouse.gov

Delegate David A. Evans
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3151
E-mail: david.evans@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Danny Hamrick
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3141
E-mail: danny.hamrick@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Suzette Raines
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3340
E-mail: suzette.raines@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Ruth Rowan
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3157
E-mail: ruth.rowan@wvhouse.gov

Delegate Steve Westfall
Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3140
E-mail: steve.westfall@wvhouse.gov

If your last name begins with P–S, please contact these Senators concerning SB 404:

Senator Robert H. Plymale
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7937
E-mail: robert.plymale@wvsenate.gov

Senator Erik Wells
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7841
E-mail: erik.wells@wvsenate.gov

Senator Robert D. Beach
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7919
E-mail: bob.beach@wvsenate.gov

Senator H. Truman Chafin
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7808
E-mail: truman.chafin@wvsenate.gov

Senator Larry J. Edgell
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7827
E-mail: larry.edgell@wvsenate.gov

Senator Daniel J. Hall
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7807
E-mail: daniel.hall@wvsenate.gov

Senator William R. Laird IV
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7849
E-mail: william.laird@wvsenate.gov

If your last name begins with T–Z, please contact these Senators concerning SB 404:

Senator Ron Stollings
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7939
E-mail: ron.stollings@frontier.com

Senator Gregory A. Tucker
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7906
E-mail: greg.tucker@wvsenate.gov

Senator John R. Unger II
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7933
E-mail: john.unger@wvsenate.gov

Senator Clark S. Barnes
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7973
E-mail: clark.barnes@wvsenate.gov

Senator Donna J. Boley
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7905
E-mail: donnaboley@suddenlink.net

Senator Mitch Carmichael
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7855
E-mail: Mitch.Carmichael@wvsenate.gov

Senator Bill Cole
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7843
E-mail: bill.cole@wvsenate.gov

Status:
3/1/2013 (Senate) Introduced and Referred to Education Committee

 Other Resources

Bill Text

Bill History