Tuscaloosa plans weekday curfew starting next year to fight truancy

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) — The Tuscaloosa City Council is taking steps to make sure school students are staying in school and out of trouble.  

The a council committee recently passed a new daytime curfew ordinance to address the issue of students who are skipping school. Resident Earl Linebarger, who has a granddaughter in 10th grade at Central High School, said he supports the new law and that it should have been on the books years ago.

“Hopefully, it will take a lot of crime off the street and put individuals in jail or wherever they need to be,” Linebarger said. “Kids are skipping school and coming up missing and you can’t find them and when you do find them, it’s too late. And it’s really bad, our children should be in school.”

If a student in Tuscaloosa City Schools skips class, their parents will be given a citation when the minor is found in violation of the daytime curfew law. Parents could pay up to $500 in fines and face six months in jail. 

Mayor Walt Maddox said having the new law gives the city the means to make sure students are staying in school. If students are not attending, parents will be held responsible.

“As a parent, if I know that my child skips school, there is a possibility that I could end up in municipal court,” Maddox said. “That’s going to make me more vigilant as a parent and I think it will make most parents vigilant and if your not you will find yourself in front of a judge.”

The new curfew law makes it illegal for minors to be unsupervised in public from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday when school is in session.  

If the council passes the proposal, the new daytime curfew law could go into effect in January.


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