Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Archive
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Tuesday, March 16, 1999 Published at 08:20 GMT


Education

'Zero-tolerance' of truants in shopping centre

Shopping centres want to attract adults rather than truants

When Britain's largest shopping centre opens in Kent on Tuesday, it will be declared a "zero-tolerance" zone for truants.

Shopping centres have frequently become magnets for children playing truant from school, often leading to problems of petty crime and delinquency.

But Bluewater shopping centre in Dartford, Kent, is determined to avoid gaining such a reputation and has sent leaflets to parents of children at local schools advising them that young people will not be allowed to hang around the centre during school time.


[ image: Police have extra powers to detain suspected truants and return them to school]
Police have extra powers to detain suspected truants and return them to school
This policy will be backed by checks at the centre by police and security guards to see if children found in the shops at Bluewater should be attending school.

Under new anti-truancy measures introduced by the home secretary, the police have been given greater powers to detain truants and return them, where necessary, to school.

Bluewater, an out-of-town shopping centre on the M25 motorway around London, is expecting 80,000 visitors a day to its 320 shops, 40 restaurants and bars and a multiplex cinema.

But Kent County Council and the local police are hoping that a high-profile campaign will stop truants being among the shopping centre's regular visitors.

Michael Angell, the chairman of Kent County Council's pupil services board, said that the council knew "from past experience that large shopping centres are popular venues for children truanting from school".

"These children are missing out on their education which will put them at disadvantage in later life. We are working very hard to reduce levels of truancy to make this centre a truancy-free zone."





Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


Education Contents

Features
Hot Topics
UK Systems
League Tables

Relevant Stories

10 Mar 99 | UK
Shopping showdown

26 Jan 99 | Features
Parents of truants face prison

30 Nov 98 | Education
Police get new powers to stop truancy

02 Nov 98 | Education
Truants offered prize for staying in school

06 Oct 98 | Education
Parents 'condoning truancy'





Internet Links


Bluewater


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

'Golden hellos' fail to attract new teachers

Children join online Parliament

Pupils 'too ignorant to vote'

Red tape toolkit 'not enough'

Poor report for teacher training consortium

Specialist schools' results triumph

Ex-headmaster guilty of more sex charges

Blunkett welcomes Dyke's education commitment

Web funding for specialist teachers

Local authorities call for Woodhead's sacking

Dyslexic pensioner wins PhD

Armed forces children need school help

Black pupils 'need better-trained teachers'

College 'is not cool'