‘Extraordinary’ loophole removed, teachers told to report absent students faster
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A loophole that gave schools three days to report missing children has finally been changed following the near death of a child in Newport.
The boy, 8, was playing hide-and-seek in his mother’s car during school drop-off, and as such remained accidentally locked in the vehicle for hours amid sweltering heat.
He was found in a critical condition and was considered lucky to make a full recovery.
“It’s got to be one of the silliest loopholes I’ve ever come across.”
– Heidi Murphy
The boys discovery was hours after he had been listed as absent at school.
The matter highlighted a loophole that gave schools three days to contact parents of absent children.
Acting Premier James Merlino today told Heidi Murphy the state government had changed the policy, forcing teachers to act faster.
“School’s will have to say, as early as practical on that day, that the child is absent,” he said.
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Heidi Murphy applauded the move.
“It’s got to be one of the silliest loopholes I’ve ever come across,” she said.
“Three days? I find that just extraordinary.”