In the Media

Mum jailed for not sending her son to school

PUBLISHED July 28, 2006

A MOTHER has been jailed for two months after failing to send her son to primary school.

Emma Wardle, of Mill Hill, Little Hulton, was sentenced by Salford magistrates the first such sentence they have imposed.

A spokesman for Salford City Council said it was the first time a parent had been jailed for failing to send a pupil to school.

The court was told that Wardle had repeatedly refused to co-operate with education workers since being brought before the courts in January after her son, Terrence Hamer, aged 11, missed classes at Dukesgate Primary School in Earlsdon Crescent, Worsley.

A warrant for Wardle's arrest was issued on May 22 after she failed to attend a court hearing.

Following her arrest, Wardle was bailed to appear in court on Monday, where magistrates said they had no alternative but to send her to prison.

Cllr John Warmisham, Salford council's lead member for children's services, said: "By law, we must do all we can to make sure parents take their responsibilities seriously when it comes to sending their children to school.

"In cases like this, we will contact a family again and again.

"We will give them all the help and support we can to encourage them to work with their local school to help their child benefit from a good education.

"The last thing we want to do is see someone sent to prison if it can be avoided, but in the end the responsibility rests with the parents.

"Most people manage to send their child to school without any difficulty, but where that doesn't happen, people are breaking the law and we will take action."