Saturday, December 19, 2009
Unexcused School Absences Take Dramatic Drop in Georgia
Georgia Schools Lead Nation in Attendance - Educational Leaders Praise Teachers and Students
Eighth Graders Enter Oral Plea
DECEMBER 18--Recently, Georgia's Director of Public Education praised teachers,parents and students for the dramatic drop in student abscences. "These numbers reflect a growth in awareness among students and parents alike that the kids belong in school, not out on the streets, unsupervised, where they are more easily lured into mischief," said the top educator for the state.
Not only was there a large decrease in unexcused abscences, educators also noticied an unusual increase in the demand from adults to enroll in school. Many of these cited lost opportunities when they were students and a desire to make up for these losses now, while they are still young. But there were several older adults as well; one man who wanted to return to the 8th grade listed his age as 76.
In an unrelated development in one of Georgia's Middle Schools, two eighth graders this week accepted pleas to public indecency charges after they engaged in oral sex while a substitute teacher was helping other students at the front of the classroom. A male student asked a female classmate to perform oral sex on him, and the girl agreed. With her view obstructed, the substitute was unaware of the sex occurring a few rows away.
However, a few jealous classmates observed the December 4 encounter and reported it to a Warner Robins Middle School administrator. None of the students apparently informed the substitute teacher about the sex act as it was occuring during fourth period. As part of their plea, sodomy charges against both students were dropped, and a probation violation count leveled against the boy was dismissed. After being held at a youth detention facility, the girl was released to her parents's custody. The boy remains locked up, according to a law enforcement official who declined to comment because he was not authorized to speak about the incident.