Truancy Diversion Program
The Truancy Diversion Program (TDP) helps students at risk of being charged with a truancy offense because of too many unexcused absences. The program uses a team approach to help students develop good attendance habits and improve their overall school experience. The TDP meets the needs of truant students by using education, prevention, accountability and treatment, if applicable, to address the issues surrounding truancy.
Some members of the Truancy Diversion Program Review Team are: judges, county attorney, court designated worker, community based services personnel, school personnel, etc. The TDP Review Team meets to ensure that the students fulfill the obligations outlined in their personal action plan. The Court designated worker (CDW) oversees the program’s administrative duties, such as tracking attendance with the assistance of school personnel, scheduling court reviews, reporting on student participation, working with the county attorney on diversion agreements and assisting the judge. CDWs are employed by the Administrative Office of the Courts to help juveniles charged with offenses to enter diversion programs or to navigate the court system, based upon the court’s ruling. Their work with troubled juveniles gives the CDWs insight into helping truant students.
There are two phases to the Truancy Diversion Program:
- The Precomplaint Phase is when the truant student and his or her parents meet with the TDP Review Team and attend a two-hour educational workshop.
- The Complaint Phase occurs when the student has been absent or tardy six or more times without a valid excuse and is considered habitually truant. The CDW fills out a complaint on the student, and the student and his or her parents must comply with recommendations and requirements set forth by the CDW and/or team.