Does My Child’s School Need to Know About My Child’s Arrest?

Often one of the first concerns of a parent whose child is facing a criminal juvenile situation is “do I have to tell their school about this situation?”  There is no legal requirement that you disclose your child’s situation to their school.  In fact, generally the fewer people you and your child talk to about the situation, the better.

There are some practical implications of having a pending court case which may result in your child’s school learning of the issue.  One of the main ones is that your child will generally make several appearances in court, which are almost exclusively held during times that he or she is supposed to be in school.  While you or your attorney can typically get an excuse from the court for the absence, obviously the court’s excuse will state that the child was in court, which may lead to more questions from the school.  Another issue is that people (especially juveniles) talk, and should your child start talking to his or her friends about the situation, the facts of what happened or did not happen, etc. not only could that effect the case, word could also get back to school administrators.

If you do not want administrators, teachers, coaches, etc. asking questions and scrutinizing your child regarding his or her actions, you should act with discretion regarding who you to talk to about the situation, and encourage your child to do the same.

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