Should parents be fined if their child is late for school?

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The battle to get out the door on time every day is one that most parents will be familiar with – and have probably pulled their hair out over.

I have three kids to get ready on my own – clothes, shoes, breakfast, teeth, hair…the whole bit – and then three drop offs, as I cruise by kindy, primary school and high school (the educational trifecta!). But imagine adding the threat of a $200 fine to the mix, if you're running a bit late.

As a pathologically punctual type myself, I make sure my kids are never late, but that's only because I make them get up at 3am and shout a lot (part of that is an exaggeration – I'll let you decide which bit). But parents in the UK have been informed that they stand to be fined £120 (over $200) if their children are repeatedly late for school.

The Sunday Times reported the County Council of Warwickshire will fine parents £60 (over $100) if their kids are 30 minutes late to school, and if they don't pay the fine within three weeks, it will be increased to £120.

Parents will also be fined if their children don't show up for school at all.

The procedure of fining parents began at Winter Gardens Academy when a school board inspection found that children who turned up late were interrupting classes for other students.

A former school governor named Eleanor spoke to LCB Radio recently, and said problems were caused when many parents didn't get their first choice in schools for their children.

"So they're juggling work. They're juggling taking one child to one school and another child to a different school, and simply what with the traffic and everything else," she said.

As someone who "juggles" on a daily basis, I still don't understand how parents get their kids to school late. Especially when it happens over and over again. But should they be fined?

Pfft, if a child coming in late to class is going to have a detrimental effect on my punctual children's education, I think my children might need to learn to focus better. Life is full of distractions.

On the other hand, if a fine will help tardy parents to get their kids into class, where they can learn, maybe it's a good thing.