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April 27, 2015

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Threat of losing driver’s license at heart of teen truancy bill

Students who often skip school could lose their driver’s license under a bill approved 21-0 by the Senate Friday.

The bill, which goes to the Assembly, says school officials may impose “administrative sanctions” on a pupil who has been designated as a habitual truant.

A student who has missed classes more than three times in one year is declared a habitual truant. If this is the first infraction for a student 14 years and older, the school officials may order the suspension of the driver’s license for anywhere from 60 days to one year.

If the student does not possess a driver’s license, officials can decide that he or she cannot apply for a license for 60 days, according to Senate Bill 269.

The truant must surrender his license to school officials who will then notify the state Department of Motor Vehicles of the suspension.

Parents are given the right to appeal the sanctions.

The school principal can provide a student who is 14 to 18 years old with a letter showing the pupil has complied with the attendance requirement and is eligible for a permit.

The current law sets the standards for issuance of a license to a person who is 16 or 17 years old. And a restricted license can be approved for those who are 14 to 18.

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  1. "Students who often skip school could lose their driver's license under a bill approved 21-0 by the Senate Friday. The bill, which goes to the Assembly, says school officials may impose "administrative sanctions" on a pupil who has been designated as a habitual truant."

    And each Senator who voted for it violated his/her oath of office to support, protect and defend our Constitutions. Have a look @ #5 @ -- where's the due process of law?

    Far too often laws are made with barely a nod to whether or not they are Constitutional. This situation is exacerbated by the fact the legislature has its own law office, staffed by Nevada Bar members. The worst part about this is the state licensed a fundamental freedom -- traveling on the public right of way -- then added many conditional restrictions over time (drivers' licenses, vehicle registrations, insurance, &c.). Here that guaranteed liberty is gone at a school's whim.

    Welcome to the Police State of Nevada.

    "Where rights secured by the Constitution are involved, there can be no rulemaking or legislation which would abrogate them." -- Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 491 (1966)

  2. "The last I checked, there was no right to possess a driver's license -- I fail to see what the Constitution has to do with allowing or prohibiting a privileged activity."

    happyleper -- you must be blissful in your ignorance. It was explained in my first post -- a protected freedom was converted to a licensed privilege. The U.S. Supremes explained it several times in cases like Kent v. Dulles -- decisions arising from the 1950s red hysteria.

    "Our citizens have a right to go where they please." -- from Thomas Jefferson's letter to the President, Philadelphia, April 2, 1791

  3. They will still have the right to go where they please....just not drive there.

    How do you suggest we curb habitual truancy?

  4. "First of all, KillerB, I think it's pretty rude to call someone who disagrees with you "ignorant."

    happyleper -- considering you were informed of the unConstitutionality of this topic, and assuming all who post are at least high school graduates, that term is the most apt. "Second," I quoted from the U.S. Supremes for support. Your opinion is a nude one. You flunked, class dismissed.

    " Real smart. How about spending some money on truant officers..."

    BarryS -- good suggestion, assuming a kid not going to school is committing a crime. But then government rarely follows good suggestions.

    "They will still have the right to go where they please....just not drive there."

    cmon -- how despicably smug of you. I'd like to hear what you have to say when your NDL gets pulled by some bureaucrat.

    " little does the common herd know of the nature of right and truth." - Socrates in Plato's "Euthyphro" (399 B.C.E.?)

  5. "KillerB, you cited a Supreme Court relating to passports."

    happyleper -- no, you're reading it far too narrowly. Kent is a major case on the right to travel and how limited government is to restrict it. That's right up front in the syllabus from Kent v. Dulles, 357 U.S. 116 (1958): "Held ... (a) The right to travel is a part of the "liberty" of which a citizen cannot be deprived without due process of law under the Fifth Amendment. Pp. 125-127."

    Pages 125-7 discuss, among other good stuff, how this is a freedom traced back to at least the Magna Carta, etc. Justice Douglas liked the Chafee quote: "Our nation has thrived on the principle that, outside areas of plainly harmful conduct, every American is left to shape his own life as he thinks best, do what he pleases, go where he pleases."

    Syllabus (e) is also relevant and the discussion on page 129.

    Which takes us back to that bit from Miranda I quoted in my first post.

    Still want to play?

  6. Just because you take away their license or permit, doesn't mean that they won't drive anyhow.

    Those who commit crimes, usually commit countless crimes before they actually get caught. This is based on my career experience working in Correctional and Alternative Ed in California. Human nature rarely changes its set path.

    Truancy is an issue that should involve both parent and child, so also suspend the parent's license as well, to be fair. Maybe there will be more accountability by the parent with their child.

    Blessings and Peace,

  7. "Sure, I'll play -- your court case is still irrelevant, as far as I'm concerned, because it doesn't address the specific constitutionality of driver's licenses, much as you might want it to."

    happyleper -- opinions vary, and the U.S. Supreme court is on my side. What matters is that court has used the Kent case 42 times since issuing the original, the latest last year. Until you can cite actual authorities to back you up, you remain willfully ignorant. Your choice, though that's a pity. I'm through with you here.

    "Just because you take away their license or permit, doesn't mean that they won't drive anyhow. Those who commit crimes, usually commit countless crimes before they actually get caught."

    star -- your reasoning is disturbing in that you seem to equate truancy with crime. Far, far too often lawmakers criminalize behavior although no crime is actually committed -- truancy, for example lacks both the essentials of mens rea and corpus delicti. No one gets hurt just because the kids don't go to school, so where's the crime??

    "The child is not the mere creature of the State; those who nurture him and direct his destiny have the right, coupled with the high duty, to recognize and prepare him for additional obligations." -- Pierce v. Society of Sisters, 268 U.S. 510, 535 (1925)

  8. Thanks, Commenter Azsk8fan. Your response is exactly what I had seen on several occassions. As a parent, you can take away the keys, impose restrictions, or other measures with an otherwise compliant child, and it may work.

    But, if you have a teen who is extra rebellious and or manipulative, it turns into a near impossible situation and power struggle. Even if family counseling is involved (there's no guarantee that such sessions will change the mindset of a teen).

    Being proactive in a child's early years of behavior may or may not help. Over the years, and with much experience with children and their families, I believe sometimes it is a case of either being plain ol lucky, or able to head trouble off at the pass, or it is luck of the draw. The best of parents could end up in a situation where a child's school life and peers influence the child beyond their parent's belief. They didn't see it coming many times.

    Parenting isn't easy. That fact alone should deter parenthood altogether, but it doesn't. You do what you need to do. If parents are lucky, they live through the teenage experience, hope their children grow up into productive, happy citizens who wait to have families until they are prepared and are financially responsible for them. In that vein, I have been so blessed. :)

    Blessings and Peace,