truancy hawks want every dollar

Council bill links mental health, truancy and violence | Erica Redmond | Capital Land | Washington Examiner Using their police power, schools have long been instrumental in advocating for medications to subdue children and the pressure of NCLB to reduce drop out numbers has increased this pressure even more. Truancy police are created by compulsory attendance laws that militarize a public social service and make schools police families in ever more ruthless ways. This bill takes it a step further:

At-large D.C. Councilman David Catania introduced a bill Tuesday that would crack down on student truancy and tailor behavioral health programming to the needs of District schools. 
The bill would require mental health screening for children under the age of 6 in order to prevent future behavioral problems, as well as train teachers to evaluate students for mental health problems. The bill also includes tougher truancy standards because truancy is directly linked to violence, Catania said. Currently, students can have 25 unexcused absences during a school year before being referred to the court system. The bill would reduce the number of unexcused absences to seven per month or 10 over the course of a school year.
Catania announced the bill last week on the one-year anniversary of a mass shooting on South Capitol Street that left four teenagers dead.
 
“The District’s legacy of failure in these areas created the conditions that made tragedy like the one that occurred a year ago possible,” Catania said last week. “The bill will create the most comprehensive and sophisticated youth mental health screening system in the country and will at long last ensure real enforcement of existing truancy laws."
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