Monday, June 14, 2010

A proposal unworthy of Worthy

The Detroit News: Skip teacher conference -- and go to jail?
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy wants to make it illegal for parents to skip parent-teacher conferences.

It's a plan that's still in the works, and Worthy acknowledges it faces a tough sell. But she said she's so concerned about truancy and juvenile crime that she wants an ordinance that would force parents to attend at least one conference a year -- or face jail.

That's quite over-the-top and much too statist for my tastes, and given that the Detroit Public School system is in shambles, having the parents show up to a conference is not going to help matters much.

Now its true that parents should be involved in their kids education and should be engaged in making sure their child is learning. Facing jail time for missing a parent-teacher conference? Not so much.

Wayne County is lacking resources and jail space can't even handle the real criminals law enforcement catches, giving the vast majority of first offenders, and often multiple-time offenders, probation for everythingfrom possession with intent to deliver narcotics to assault with intent to commit murder. Adding parents neglecting to attend parent-teacher nights to this list won't help matters much.

Worthy should stick to what she does best, prosecuting criminals, and hopefully pushing for better results than probation on felonies rather than trying to put the nanny in nanny-state.

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