Juvenile violence and truancy down in EBR Parish
BATON ROUGE - Truancy has dropped drastically among youth in East Baton Rouge Parish, and local leaders say the creation of the Family and Youth Service Center is helping.
It was set up five years ago to address juvenile crime and since they opened their doors in 2009, truancy has gone down by nearly 30 percent and delinquency by 25 percent.
Wednesday, Mayor-President Kip Holden and other local leaders stressed the importance of a strong support system at home and say parents need to step up to the plate when it comes to their child's education.
"You have to emphasize to the parents, we can't do it all," Mayor Holden said. "You have a role you need to play."
"If you want more Blue Ribbon schools then you need Blue Ribbon support," added EBR Superintendent Bernard Taylor. "It isn't the child that is viewed as the problem. It's the problems around the child we need to figure out how to solve."
FYSC says poverty is the number one reason kids miss school, explaining that parents are more concerned about finding ways to feed their family than getting their kids to school.
They hope their program inspires a change in the whole family and puts school higher on the priority list.