Truancy Sweep in Kalihi Nets 70 Students Cutting School

Maj. Kurt Kendro
Maj. Kurt Kendro
Jen Osorio
Jen Osorio

KALIHI (KHNL) -- Reading, writing, and riding in a patrol car.

Honolulu police conducted a truancy sweep in Kalihi Thursday morning, and nabbed 70 students for cutting school.

Jen Osorio says she often sees children roaming the streets during school hours.

"I mostly see them at the bus stops," she said. "Like I don't know where they're going, but they're catching a ride to go somewhere else, I guess, away from school."

Kalihi police, who conduct truancy operations at least every other month, apprehended 70 students in a three-hour period.

"I think that's good for the children, I mean, 'cause they should be in school," Osorio said.

"I was very surprised by the number of kids that were apprehended this morning," Maj. Kurt Kendro, Honolulu Police Department, said. "When we do these truancy operations, we generally don't get that many."

Of the 70 truants, 66 go to Farrington High School. We see many teens leaving the campus in the middle of the day. Some may have valid reasons, but others don't.

"We know that truancy leads to other types of delinquent behavior and even criminality," Kendro said. "So it's important that we send out a message to parents as well as the community members that, you know, kids belong in school."

Three of the kids caught cutting class attend Kalakaua Middle. One goes to McKinley High.

"Many times from retail establishments we get complaints about kids being in there during school hours," Kendro said. "So we try to make it a point to address it as well."

Osorio, a mother of four, says she tries to keep her children in line.

"My kids, I told them don't ever put me in that situation," she said.

Farrington High officials say officers transported their students to the campus, and then parents and guardians were notified.