A new report out of the Guardian exposes an insidious scheme by police and school officials to fine students who miss too many online classes. Tracy Higgins was one of these parents who was shocked when police showed up at her home to issue her teenage son a $439 fine for missing zoom meetings for class.
Higgins told the Guardian the reason for the online absences was due to faulty school technology, including a Chromebook that wouldn’t charge. But police and the school district reportedly did not care, so Higgins’s son was extorted.
Debra Pratt, another mother from the same district was also confronted by armed agents of the state who showed up at her home to extort her son for the same reason. Her son Jason racked up 28 unexcused absences online, including while he was battling the coronavirus.
“I think it’s ridiculous, absolutely ridiculous, especially during a pandemic when there’s just too many other factors that are playing into this,” Pratt told the Guardian.
Pratt told the Guardian her son struggled to learn remotely which is a situation millions of children found themselves in during the pandemic. Sadly, millions of children are still not in school and these situations continue to play out.