Parents warned about teen's school absences
The parents of a teenager who has been absent from school for 78% of the school year have been given a month's prison sentence which has been suspended.
The parents, who appeared before Balbriggan District Court, claim they have been walking the teenager to the school door and 'don't know how he hasn't been to school.'
'We have told him we'll be going to jail if he doesn't go to school but I don't think he believes us,' the father told Judge Dermot Dempsey.
The court heard there has been no explanations given in regards to the teenager's absence from school.
The parents said they make sure he gets up at 7am and gets dressed for school.
'We can't understand it,' the teen's mother said. 'He told his teachers he didn't like coming into school.'
Solicitor Fiona D'Arcy, acting on behalf of the parents, suggested the teenager be brought to court for the judge to explain to him his parents face jail if he doesn't attend school.
The teen's mother said she finds it 'very stressful as a parent' that he won't attend school.
'I don't think he fully realises the seriousness and I agree he should come before the court.'
However, Judge Dermot Dempsey said he thinks the teen's parents don't realise the seriousness of the situation.
'It's up to the parents to make sure he goes to school,' said Judge Dempsey and imposed a one month's sentence on both parents.
He suspended the prison sentence on condition the teen attends school from now on.
'If he doesn't attend you both are going to prison,' he warned.