By Lauren Leamanczyk, WBZ-TV's New Hampshire Bureau Chief

NASHUA, N.H. (CBS) – Students who play hooky from school in Nashua could face steep fines.

The new policy is meant to address a big problem in the school district. More than 300 kids in Nashua’s high schools missed more than 20 days of school last year because of unexcused absences. Now those teenagers will face fines of $100 for every day they skip school. The fines will only affect students 16 and older who have missed at least 20 days.

Superintendent Mark Conrad says last year the state held truancy court at Nashua North High School where a judge addressed the worst offenders. It was working until the state cut that program. The fines are the district’s only option to get habitual truants back in front of a judge, Conrad says.

WBZ-TV’s Lauren Leamanczyk reports

“The intent here is to not fine students but to get them back in school,” he explained.

Students who don’t pay the fines could be held in contempt of court.

Nashua North junior Makayla says she has skipped school in the past and many of her friends do it regularly. “All my friends don’t come because they just don’t like the school or the people there,” she explained. Makayla doubts the fines will change their behavior.

Her mother, Virginia Foye says she thinks it’s a great idea and she believes the fines should kick in before 20 unexcused absences.

Another parent, Mike Dube, told WBZ he’s against the fines, because he’d rather the trouble makers just stay home. “Why come. You’re causing problems for kids who want to learn,” he said.

Conrad believes the fines will help identify the problems behind truancy and provide assistance to students who need it before it’s too late.

“The outlook is very poor for students who drop out of school, so we’re doing everything we can so they don’t make that mistake now,” he said.

Comments (7)
  1. Paul says:

    but “Leave no child behind”….cough!!!!! Some deserve to be kicked to the curb for wasting space. Schools are a TEACHING facility….not a daycare for delinquents.

    1. gramps says:

      “FINES WILL GET YOU NOWHERE!”!!! >>>>>>>>>The following will, FIX THE PROBLEM!


      Attack a teens ‘privilege’ to drive & you’ll hear their eyeballs click!

      For starters, don’t let truants, drinkers or drug users park on ‘High School Grounds’ & have the police tow any illegally parked car within 2 blocks….

      Pass a Law to deprive ‘TEENAGERS’ of their ability to drive @ 16, or if they already have one, remove their ‘Drivers Licenses till their 18′, if they are found truant, drinking, or with people who ‘ARE’ drinking…….Any ‘teen’ who runs afoul of the ‘Law’ in ANY way….or is a school discipline problem, if they don’t do their ‘homework’, or ‘drops out of school’……Has to wait longer to get their drivers license……

      Forget 16, hello 18……!!

      In June of 2009 Alabama passed in a new Law, ‘Taylor’s Law’, that would delay teens with school discipline problems from getting a driver’s license by creating a point system whereby for each accrued point for disciplinary actions at school, the student would have one week added to the age at which he or she would be eligible to apply for a permit or license.

      That Alabama Law is a good ‘foundation’ that Massachusetts can build on……As soon as the ‘lil darlings see a few of their ‘Classmates’ riding their ‘BIKES’ to school or until their 18th birthday they’ll ‘smarten-up’ real quick!

      The drop-out rate will fall, ‘Teen’ drinking & crime will diminish!

      Halos will be uniform of the day……

      “Just do it”!


      1. gramps says:

        Here’s a working link to the Alabama teen driving law:

      2. gramps says:

        Another thing: “A dress Code!”

        T-Shirts, Sweats, Sneakers & ‘Boob’s’.

        The last two generations of Parents have set the tone/example for today’s culture….It started 20 or so years ago with ‘Causal Friday’ @ work…

        To where we are today:

        Cleavage, Butt Cracks, Baseball Hats (90 degrees off center) & Bare Mid-Drifts. The boys look like ‘bums’ & girls look like ‘Street Walkers’….you could even say that for boy’s, it’s a ‘hostile work environment’, that’s not conducive to learning!

        They’re the product of our permissive, loose, nobody’s responsible, coddled PC society of today!


    2. gramps says:

      Why wait until the ‘kiddies’ have blown away ’20’ days? …..That’s ‘1 MONTH!’….!

      That’s absurd….You should be fined for the 1st ’19’ days!


  2. Paul says:

    But….”leave no child behind”….they should kick his rear to the curb. Schools are TEACHING facilities….not daycares for delinquents.

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