WINFIELD, W.Va. -- The state Supreme Court says truancy cases in Putnam County are down sharply ever since the county began a diversion program that involves court monitoring.
Under the program, a magistrate is assigned truancy cases before they are referred to the state Department of Health and Human Resources. Previously the cases were referred to DHHR, then to court.
If a juvenile doesn't comply with the diversion program, the case is then referred to circuit court where a hearing is conducted within 10 days.
The Supreme Court says a magistrate has held 152 truancy diversion hearings since the current school year began and 184 hearings in the 2010-11 school year. In the five years before the program began in 2009, there was an average of nearly 380 truancy cases each year.