A Georgia mother has been arrested because her son had three unexcused absences from school.
Julie Giles is a substitute teacher in Screven County school district. She has two children she describes as “gifts from God” and a small town home she calls as “precious as Mayberry.”
Right before Mother’s Day, Giles received a letter threatening a potential warrant out for her arrest, Mad World News reported.
The letter stated that her son had six more “unexcused” absences than allowed per year. However, Giles said a doctor reissued three excuses that her son failed to turn in.
Still, an arrest warrant was issued for Giles and she turned herself in Thursday night, WTOC reported.
When she turned herself in, Giles told Mad World News she was shackled immediately, had her mug shot taken, and was booked into jail.
Giles added that her son is an A/B honor roll student. She said he racked up most of the absences in February, when a virus was spreading throughout the community and making many children sick.
William Bland, Screven County Schools Superintendent, said the woman’s arrest was not unusual. He said that “several” parents have been convicted in similar situations this school year, after not being able to work out a solution with school officials.
“It’s important for these children to be in school and I think the courts recognize that,” Bland told WTOC.
But Giles claims she was never given a chance to work out a solution with school officials. She told Mad World News she was blindsided by the arrest warrant and was told by several neighboring school districts that these types of convictions were not a typical practice.
I believe that education is paramount. I understand that attendance is a crucial part of academic success. I know that laws need to be put into place to protect children, but putting parents in shackles isn’t the answer. I feel that the actions taken against me show no real concern for my son. Surrounding counties implement social worker visits, more meetings, and set a court date before police action is taken. Only is a warrant issued in these areas when the court date is missed. This abuse of power is hurting families. Both of my sons have been traumatized. I believe that there needs to be more than one meeting with the parent before the parent is arrested.
Giles has since been released from jail and is awaiting her court date.