CHILD PROTECTIVE HOTLINE
Criteria For Report Acceptance: Special Categories
The Department of Children and Families
shall accept reports of the educational neglect of children, as described below.
Educational neglect occurs when a
parent of a child , age seven through fifteen, interferes with the ability of the child to
receive proper care and attention educationally.
Proper care and attention educationally is the consistent
receipt of a program of educational services provided by a Local Education Agency (LEA) or
by an approved private school or through home instruction in accordance with state
Department of Education procedures.
Legal References: CONN. GEN. STAT. §46b-120; and
A truant is a child enrolled in a grade from kindergarten to
eight, inclusive, in a public or private school who has four unexcused absences from
school in any one month or ten unexcused absences from school in any school year.
A habitual truant is any such child who has twenty unexcused
absences within a school year.
Legal Reference: CONN. GEN. STAT. §10-198a(a).
|Criteria for Hotline Acceptance
are statutorily mandated to file a Family with Service Needs (FWSN) petition regarding
all children who are defined as habitually truant. Such action is discretionary on the
part of the LEA for children defined as truant. The filing of a FWSN petition does not
preclude DCF from also accepting a report of educational neglect.
Child Protective Hotline shall use the following criteria in
determining acceptance of a report of educational neglect:
- A presumption exists that parents or guardians are fully responsible for ensuring school
attendance for children age seven (7) through eleven (11). A pattern of unexcused absences
shall be accepted as neglect.
- parental action, including
- not enrolling the child, age seven (7) through fifteen (15), in school
- not assuring that the child gets to school
- keeping the child at home
- refusing or failing to cooperate with LEA efforts, including in-school, outreach
efforts, and referrals, to ensure the childs attendance
- refusing to comply with requirements related to home instruction.
|Information Required for Acceptance of a
Report of Educational Neglect
The LEA must submit a written report,
DCF-136, "Report of Suspected Child Abuse/Neglect", to Hotline regarding the
childs unexcused absences, including the following information:
- identifying information regarding the parents and child
- specific dates of the non-excused absences
- documentation of the following:
- in-school efforts to address the lack of attendance; e.g., meeting with the parents and
child, summary reports of discussions and any related material
- outreach efforts to the family, including home visits, letters, phone calls
- efforts made to refer the family and child to community services and the LEAs
assessment of the results of such efforts
- the name and telephone number of the LEA contact person.
|Notification to LEA of Report Acceptance or
Hotline shall notify the LEA of the
acceptance or non-acceptance of any report of educational neglect through use of DCF-2122,
"Letter to Mandated Reporters."
When a child is truant and the parent has attempted to make use of the
LEA and community services and demonstrates appropriate responsibility, and Hotline does
not accept the report as educational neglect, then Hotline shall notify the LEA to file a
FWSN petition for truancy.
Connecticut Department of Children and Families
Effective Date: October 1, 1996 (Revised)