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Her Son Had 3 Unexcused Absences So She Got Arrested

Her Son Had 3 Unexcused Absences So She Got ArrestedThe day before Mother’s Day, Julie Giles, was presented with a warrant for her arrest.

Was it for drugs, theft, murder?

No. It was because her son, who is on the honor roll, had missed too many days of school.

The Screven County School District allows students to have only six unexcused absences during the school year. Giles’ son had 12. While she was able to procure doctor’s notes to explain three days of those 12, that still put her over the six-day allowable limit.

Why couldn’t she get doctor’s notes for the remaining sick days?

According to her Facebook page, she “cannot afford a copay every single time they are sick, but I never want to send them to school when they feel bad or could possibly get others sick.”

In essence this mother’s crime is being conscientious enough to keep her son home when he’s ill, but also unable to afford a doctor’s visit every time she has to do so.

Having grown up on the poorer side of the financial bell curve, and failing to have insurance for much of my younger years, I never saw the doctor when I was sick. Thankfully I was never ill enough to truly warrant it, but the fact remains that my mother most likely would also have found herself in ankle shackles while having her mug shot taken if these rules applied back then.

Kids get sick. A lot. They are walking, talking, sticky germ magnets. It’s part of childhood. All of that socialization and playing in the dirt sometimes leads to illness. As parents, we know the right thing to do is to keep them home and coddle them while they watch Netflix on the couch so they don’t infect their fellow classmates. But now we have to take them to the doctor every time they get a fever or sore throat so we don’t wind up in jail? Who has the time or the money to do that?

Giles didn’t. And now she’s paying the price—with money she still doesn’t have.

You can read more of the story here.

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 photo credit: Juguete via photopin (license)

3 thoughts on “Her Son Had 3 Unexcused Absences So She Got Arrested

  1. Melanie L.

    Ridiculous! At least she is getting free legal representation and I am confident this will go well for her.

  2. Renee

    This is insane! Kids get sick a lot, and often it’s middle of the road…not really well enough for school, but they don’t really need to see the doctor either. And if you send them to school when they’re sick, they’ll just send them home anyway. That’s not fair to anyone. Pediatricians don’t need to see a child for a bad cold, or a bought of vomiting. Can you imagine??? I think this mother will come out on top.

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