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Department for Education written question – answered on 28th February 2017.

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Photo of John Pugh John Pugh Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, (a) how many parents were prosecuted for truancy, (b) how many of those people were found guilty, (c) how many of those convicted were (i) fined and (ii) imprisoned, (d) what the (iii) highest, (iv) lowest and (v) average level of fine imposed was for those who received fines and (e) what the (vi) longest, (vii) shortest and (viii) average length of custodial sentence was for those people who received one.

Photo of Edward Timpson Edward Timpson Minister of State (Education)

Statistics on truancy are published by the Ministry of Justice in the “Criminal justice statistics outcomes by offence data tool”, available at:

The number of defendants proceeded at court for the offences of truancy (parent failure to secure attendance of child) was 20,808 in England and Wales in 2015. The number of offenders found guilty was 15,649. Similarly, the number of offenders sentenced was 15,649; out of these, 12,095 offenders were sentenced to a court fine, and 8 offenders were given an immediate custody sentence.

The average level of fine for truancy was £184 in 2015. The lowest fine was up to £25, and the highest fine was over £750 and up to £1,000.

The average custodial sentence length for truancy was 1.3 months in 2015, and all custodial sentences given were for 3 months or less.

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