'We are pleased with the results' - Police release data from truancy crackdown in Boston

Members of Op Absence, ready to tackle truancy in Boston.Members of Op Absence, ready to tackle truancy in Boston.
Members of Op Absence, ready to tackle truancy in Boston.
More information has been released about the results of a multi-agency crackdown on truancy in Boston.

On Tuesday (May 7), a specialist task force was on patrol around the town looking out for children not at school or an education setting as part of Operation Absence.

It comprised representatives from Boston’s Neighbourhood Policing Team, education welfare officers from four local schools (Boston High School, Giles Academy, in Old Leake, Haven High Academy, in Boston, and Thomas Middlecott Academy, in Kirton), Lincolnshire County Council and Lincolnshire Police.

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A number of home visits were also made during the day to addresses of persistent absentees.

A spokesman for Lincolnshire Police said: “The ultimate aim of the initiative is to keep young people safe and drive home one of our key crime prevention strategies, which is to tackle truancy.”

Yesterday, the force published a breakdown of Tuesday’s engagements.

In all, 43 teens were targetted, but as the numbers show their reasons for not being at school or in an education setting varied:

HOME VISITS:

  • RETURNED TO SCHOOL – 8
  • HOLIDAY – 2
  • SICKNESS – 2
  • OTHER – 2

ENCOUNTERS/STOPS:

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  • PART-TIME TIME-TABLE – 12
  • SICKNESS – 6
  • NOT ENROLLED IN EDUCATION – 4
  • MEDICAL APPOINTMENT – 2
  • HOME EDUCATED – 2
  • OTHER – 3

Lincolnshire Police said Lincolnshire County Council will be implementing standard safeguarding processes on the back of the results.

The education welfare officers from the four schools will also be carrying up follow-up work, where appropriate, they said. In addition, education welfare officers at schools that were not represented on the day have been informed of any engagements that related to their settings.

Plans are also in place to broaden the scope of the operation in the coming weeks and months, police said.

Insp Ian Cotton, of Lincolnshire Police, said: “Tackling truancy is a key prevention strategy when addressing anti-social behaviour and low achievement within our community. We are pleased with the results shown above and hope that young people from the Boston area appreciate that they have the support of the police and other partner agencies to help them avoid the detrimental impact that truancy and low attendance can have on their lives.”