If you need one more reason to pull your kids out of public school, then I've got one for you.
A 12-year old pupil from Lafayette is facing potential penalties, including a fine and a jail sentence for missing 90 minutes of Zoom class ( three 30-minute Zoom sessions) one day, last month, according to a letter from a Stanley Middle school administrator.
Mark Mastrov, Merek's father said he never received a phone call first from his son's school and other parents in the East Bay area have received letters threatening their kids' arrest as well.
"He can become a truant of the state and he could be arrested. I said, 'are you going to come and try to arrest my son at my home, or try to fine me for not getting him to his Zoom class perfect, on time everyday?'” Mastrov said.
The letter says that a student is considered truant when the student is absent without a valid excuse, according to new California guidelines ( CA Senate Bill 98) signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, in late June.
This California law requires school districts to monitor student attendance. One of the 6 potential consequences listed in the letter is arrest under the Education Code section 48364.
The seventh-grader spends up to 7 hours a day in front of his computer attending school via Zoom. Mark Mastrov believes that Merek could have logged into the virtual class a couple of minutes late. He is now urging a change in California law because arresting 12-year-old kids for missing 90 minutes of virtual school is downright ridiculous.
In July, Gov. Newsom ordered all public and private schools in counties on California's coronavirus watch list to stay closed. In August, a group of CA parents represented by conservative attorney Harmeet Dhillon filed a lawsuit against the state and Gov. Newsom for restricting in-person learning and thus violating California residents' fundamental rights.