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2010-01-21 - 7:18 a.m.


Loudoun Virginia is really hoping to broaden the interpretation of the below cited VA law to include tardiness. Considering that if my kids were 5 minutes late a dozen times this year that would mean that they have missed a total of ONE HOUR of school thus far. Missing 5 minutes UNINTENTIONALLY here and there when I do the best I can, and they ARE STRAIGHT A STUDENTS DOES NOT WARRANT ATTACKING MY RIGHT TO MOTHER MY CHILDREN.

The honest truth is that when we have been late more often than not it has been within 5 minutes of the bell, with only a couple of behavioral episodes this year which were longer. The girls behavior in the mornings has SO TREMENDOUSLY improved! That is irony of this! I waited until I felt our home was stable and I felt strong to persue treatment of Katie as I KNEW that would be resisted by her Father. I didn't expect to be attacked by the SCHOOL however for having done an intervention for her in an effort to get help!

Make no mistake: That is what is under attack here- my fitness as a Mother.

Both her Father and the school can not understand the action of having followed a DR ORDER to commit her to a children's psychiatric hospital for evaluation and treatment.

I am being called abusive for having brought her there, with the allegation she was committed based on alleged lies.

The thing is, she was committed based on her OWN attesting to certain things, and HER OWN thoughts and attitudes and actions.

*The same ones I saw as in need of serious help.

Yet I am being judged.
And not believed.
My credibility is being attacked.

Now of course this just creates another ball thrown in my court that I have to juggle and keep afloat. The tactic has ALWAYS Been to throw enough litigation balls in my court with the hope that I drop one and it comes crashing down and destroys me and the stability of my home for my children.

Nothing new.

The violation of the below code is a CLASS 3 MISDEMEANOR which alleges a violation of which is "Against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth of Virginia"

My letter attesting to how the provision of the code cited was inapplicable was clearly effective as this more general provision is now the one under which the school is actually taking me to court.

Considering I am the SAME MOTHER that brought my older children to the school ten years ago, and that this is the SAME PRINCIPAL who did not take issue with lateness then, it just amazes me that now, ten years later when I have shown such progress and growth in that area by self improvement is a number of ways,that NOW I am being attacked!

Believe me, ten years ago when we were late we WERE hours late. At that point my now EX refused to allow me to hide a key outside. He went ballistic if I did so. I even tried to hide keys to the response of violent outbursts.

So I didn't have the redundancy of a spare set of hidden keys. I remember locking ourselves out, or losing my car keys and being stranded until they were found. Typical ADHD moments which now happen so rarely! This year we were late only ONCE due to me burying my purse under the laundry I dumped on it inadvertadly that morning! I HAD a second set of keys then but also needed my purse and was heading to my 2nd job so it made more sense to take the extra 10 minutes to find it! I DID SO quickly, but that morn we were about 10 minutes late. The thing is, the school would get ANGRY when they asked "Why are you late" and I honestly tell them in a forthright manner each time. I find it so bizzare to get not only a judgmental response but an ANGRY response from them. It's like they are CONDITIONED to respond with such harshness. Is this what they do to compel compliance in our schools? I can't see it as being the most effective methods of maintaining order and discipline with kids. However to actually treat parents as if they are children under the school's domain is highly insulting. Not only that, its a violation at this point in time of my right to mother my children and maintain a peaceful happy home!

I have found the school attacking me and actively participating in my EX husband's message that I am a terrible mother and not to be trusted but feared (as when the school counselor resisted me carrying my child home and I then had to have the sheriff enforce my custody order), to be a against the peace and dignity of my family life.

The school's clear alignment and support of my husband in attacking me is so clearly not the norm. School's typically DO NOT GET INVOLVED when there are two parents attempting to co-parent together with difficulty. Schools do not typically get involved in custody battles and litigation.

However Dad's typically do not cut and paste in schools with the frequency he has (at least here in VA!), and eat lunch with their kids at school a couple days a week, and here in VA Mom's typically do not avoid going into their children's school for fear of running into their abuser.

And most parents do not teach their children to hate the other parent.

I went to watch Sadie's basketball game this past Saturday. Upon arrival at the school to watch her game the youngest sneered at me and stuck out her tongue. Katie too would not say hello and just hugged her Dad. They were both attached to him the whole time and refused to greet me. Alexy did eventually speak to me to say "YOu are MEAN. I don't like you."

I tried to engage in conversation to see if there was something she was upset about and asked "Is there something you are upset about and would like to talk about? Maybe it will make you feel better"

to the response of her Father who would not allow the conversation who said
"Don't instigate her. Leave her alone"

Instigate my five year old by attempting to talk to her?

He's unbelievable.

At least Raitlin came over and hugged me and sat on my lap a bit.

HERE is the VA CODE:

VA CODE 22.1.254
22.1-254. Compulsory attendance required; excuses and waivers; alternative education program attendance; exemptions from article.

A. Except as otherwise provided in this article, every parent, guardian, or other person in the Commonwealth having control or charge of any child who will have reached the fifth birthday on or before September 30 of any school year and who has not passed the eighteenth birthday shall, during the period of each year the public schools are in session and for the same number of days and hours per day as the public schools, send such child to a public school or to a private, denominational, or parochial school or have such child taught by a tutor or teacher of qualifications prescribed by the Board of Education and approved by the division superintendent, or provide for home instruction of such child as described in 22.1-254.1.

As prescribed in the regulations of the Board of Education, the requirements of this section may also be satisfied by sending a child to an alternative program of study or work/study offered by a public, private, denominational, or parochial school or by a public or private degree-granting institution of higher education. Further, in the case of any five-year-old child who is subject to the provisions of this subsection, the requirements of this section may be alternatively satisfied by sending the child to any public educational pre-kindergarten program, including a Head Start program, or in a private, denominational, or parochial educational pre-kindergarten program.

Instruction in the home of a child or children by the parent, guardian, or other person having control or charge of such child or children shall not be classified or defined as a private, denominational or parochial school.

The requirements of this section shall apply to (i) any child in the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice or the Department of Corrections who has not passed his eighteenth birthday and (ii) any child whom the division superintendent has required to take a special program of prevention, intervention, or remediation as provided in subsection C of 22.1-253.13:1 and in 22.1-254.01. The requirements of this section shall not apply to (a) any person 16 through 18 years of age who is housed in an adult correctional facility when such person is actively pursuing a general educational development (GED) certificate but is not enrolled in an individual student alternative education plan pursuant to subsection D, and (b) any child who has obtained a high school diploma or its equivalent, a certificate of completion, or a GED certificate, or who has otherwise complied with compulsory school attendance requirements as set forth in this article.

B. A school board shall excuse from attendance at school:

1. Any pupil who, together with his parents, by reason of bona fide religious training or belief is conscientiously opposed to attendance at school. For purposes of this subdivision, "bona fide religious training or belief" does not include essentially political, sociological or philosophical views or a merely personal moral code; and

2. On the recommendation of the juvenile and domestic relations district court of the county or city in which the pupil resides and for such period of time as the court deems appropriate, any pupil who, together with his parents, is opposed to attendance at a school by reason of concern for such pupil's health, as verified by competent medical evidence, or by reason of such pupil's reasonable apprehension for personal safety when such concern or apprehension in that pupil's specific case is determined by the court, upon consideration of the recommendation of the principal and division superintendent, to be justified.

C. A school board may excuse from attendance at school:

1. On recommendation of the principal and the division superintendent and with the written consent of the parent or guardian, any pupil who the school board determines, in accordance with regulations of the Board of Education, cannot benefit from education at such school; or

2. On recommendation of the juvenile and domestic relations district court of the county or city in which the pupil resides, any pupil who, in the judgment of such court, cannot benefit from education at such school.

D. Local school boards may allow the requirements of subsection A of this section to be met under the following conditions:

For a student who is at least 16 years of age, there shall be a meeting of the student, the student's parents, and the principal or his designee of the school in which the student is enrolled in which an individual student alternative education plan shall be developed in conformity with guidelines prescribed by the Board, which plan must include:

a. Career guidance counseling;

b. Mandatory enrollment and attendance in a general educational development preparatory program or other alternative education program approved by the local school board with attendance requirements that provide for reporting of student attendance by the chief administrator of such GED preparatory program or approved alternative education program to such principal or his designee;

c. Counseling on the economic impact of failing to complete high school; and

d. Procedures for reenrollment to comply with the requirements of subsection A of this section.

A student for whom an individual student alternative education plan has been granted pursuant to this subsection and who fails to comply with the conditions of such plan shall be in violation of the compulsory school attendance law, and the division superintendent or attendance officer of the school division in which such student was last enrolled shall seek immediate compliance with the compulsory school attendance law as set forth in this article.

Students enrolled with an individual student alternative education plan shall be counted in the average daily membership of the school division.

E. A school board may, in accordance with the procedures set forth in Article 3 ( 22.1-276.01 et seq.) of Chapter 14 of this title and upon a finding that a school-age child has been (i) charged with an offense relating to the Commonwealth's laws, or with a violation of school board policies, on weapons, alcohol or drugs, or intentional injury to another person; (ii) found guilty or not innocent of a crime that resulted in or could have resulted in injury to others, or of an offense that is required to be disclosed to the superintendent of the school division pursuant to subsection G of 16.1-260; (iii) suspended pursuant to 22.1-277.05; or (iv) expelled from school attendance pursuant to 22.1-277.06 or 22.1-277.07 or subsection B of 22.1-277, require the child to attend an alternative education program as provided in 22.1-209.1:2 or 22.1-277.2:1.

F. Whenever a court orders any pupil into an alternative education program, including a program of general educational development, offered in the public schools, the local school board of the school division in which the program is offered shall determine the appropriate alternative education placement of the pupil, regardless of whether the pupil attends the public schools it supervises or resides within its school division.

The juvenile and domestic relations district court of the county or city in which a pupil resides or in which charges are pending against a pupil, or any court in which charges are pending against a pupil, may require the pupil who has been charged with (i) a crime that resulted in or could have resulted in injury to others, (ii) a violation of Article 1 ( 18.2-77 et seq.) of Chapter 5 of Title 18.2, or (iii) any offense related to possession or distribution of any Schedule I, II, or III controlled substances to attend an alternative education program, including, but not limited to, night school, adult education, or any other education program designed to offer instruction to students for whom the regular program of instruction may be inappropriate.

This subsection shall not be construed to limit the authority of school boards to expel, suspend, or exclude students, as provided in 22.1-277.04, 22.1-277.05, 22.1-277.06, 22.1-277.07, and 22.1-277.2. As used in this subsection, the term "charged" means that a petition or warrant has been filed or is pending against a pupil.

G. Within one calendar month of the opening of school, each school board shall send to the parents or guardian of each student enrolled in the division a copy of the compulsory school attendance law and the enforcement procedures and policies established by the school board.

H. The provisions of this article shall not apply to:

1. Children suffering from contagious or infectious diseases while suffering from such diseases;

2. Children whose immunizations against communicable diseases have not been completed as provided in 22.1-271.2;

3. Children under 10 years of age who live more than two miles from a public school unless public transportation is provided within one mile of the place where such children live;

4. Children between the ages of 10 and 17, inclusive, who live more than 2.5 miles from a public school unless public transportation is provided within 1.5 miles of the place where such children live; and

5. Children excused pursuant to subsections B and C of this section.

Further, any child who will not have reached his sixth birthday on or before September 30 of each school year whose parent or guardian notifies the appropriate school board that he does not wish the child to attend school until the following year because the child, in the opinion of the parent or guardian, is not mentally, physically, or emotionally prepared to attend school, may delay the child's attendance for one year.

The distances specified in subdivisions 3 and 4 of this subsection shall be measured or determined from the child's residence to the entrance to the school grounds or to the school bus stop nearest the entrance to the residence of such children by the nearest practical routes which are usable for walking or riding. Disease shall be established by the certificate of a reputable practicing physician in accordance with regulations adopted by the Board of Education.

(Code 1950, 22-275.1; 1952, c. 279; 1959, Ex. Sess., c. 72; 1968, c. 178; 1974, c. 199; 1976, cc. 681, 713; 1978, c. 518; 1980, c. 559; 1984, c. 436; 1989, c. 515; 1990, c. 797; 1991, c. 295; 1993, c. 903; 1996, cc. 163, 916, 964; 1997, c. 828; 1999, cc. 488, 552; 2000, c. 184; 2001, cc. 688, 820; 2003, c. 119; 2004, c. 251; 2006, c. 335.)

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