California mom Lorraine Cuevas jailed for the truancy of her children

Lia Grainger
Shine On
October 4, 2012

Missing school has always been a no-no, but in California, it can land you in jail. But they're not sending wayward students to prison — it's the parents of the school-skippers that are ending up in the slammer.

A California mom was recently sentenced to 180 days of prison time for the chronic truancy of her second and third grade children. The two kids attend Monroe Elementary School in Hanford, California, and had together missed 116 days of school, or about 10 per cent of the school year.

The sentencing of 34-year-old Lorraine Cuevas falls under a new state law, and hers was one of the first arrests made for the crime of chronic truancy. The school board defended the decision, saying Cuevas was warned.

Also see: Japanese plant explosion triggers fears of a global diaper shortage

"It's a process that takes months to get to this point," superintendent Tim Bowers of Kings County Schools tells KMPH News. "On average we're making 15-20 calls in dealing with these issues."

Cuevas pleaded guilty to the crime, and became only the second person to be jailed in the county under the new state law this year.

"We are trying to enforce the law and help, not only the school district, but also the kids. If they are in school they are less likely to be involved in gangs or drugs," chief deputy at the King's County D.A.'s office James Jahn tells the New York Daily News.

This isn't the first time Cuevas has been in trouble with the law. According to the Daily News, she's previously been sentenced to two years in jail for stealing Game Boys.

Also see: Adorable kids taste ice cream for first time

The public's reaction to Cuevas's punishment has been mixed. Some moms at her school think it's too much, like Melissa Mooney, who tells KMPH, "Who's going to watch the kids if she's in jail?"

Others were less forgiving. "'I would've given her a year," says local mother Adriana Castenada. "Honesty, I think that punishment is not enough because a kid's education is really important."

While few parents would disagree with the assertion that a child's education is important, there are likely more than a few moms and dads that question whether prison time is really the answer.

What to Read Next

Hilton HHonors™ Card

Get 75,000 Hilton HHonors™ Bonus Points! Terms Apply. Offer ends 5/4

Hey! You have to check out this site!

Millions of singles over age 45 are members of this site already! If you haven’t tried it, just click on the image and start your free registration!

99 Retirement Tips from Ken Fisher

Tip #18: Beware of Annuities. If you have a $500,000 portfolio, get all 99 tips by downloading “99 Retirement Tips from Ken Fisher”.

Control your home with your voice

With a Vivint Smart Home, you have hands-free voice control to lock your doors, change the temperature, and adjust your lights.

The Payday Loan Killer: Lending Product Solution

$35,000 for $699/mo, 8.65% APR, 5 yr repayment, $0 down payment. Free, No obligation quotes. Get up to 5 offers in minutes. Start loan request now.

How to Read Your Child's Deleted iPhone Texts

New service makes it easy to monitor your child’s texts (even deleted ones) as well as activity on Snapchat, Instagram and WhatsApp.