A mother was threatened with PRISON after she refused to send her children back to school on fear of dying from Covid-19.
Katy Simpson, 29, chose to leave her son Damien and daughter Alisha, both six, at home when schools returned from the extended summer break last month.
While healthy, Katy suffers from type 1 diabetes, asthma, and an underactive thyroid – all of which she classifies as clinically vulnerable according to NHS guidelines.
Katy, mother of two, has barely left the house since lockdown measures were introduced in March and claims she only makes a brief weekly rush to the stores.
She doesn’t want to increase her exposure to the virus and has kept the kids away from the Galileo Academy Trust in North Yorks.
Katy worried that she told staff that her children would be home for the foreseeable future.
However, earlier this week she was visited by an education officer who presented her court warning letter.
It is said that she faces a hefty fine of £ 2,500 – and up to three months in jail – for failing to bring her children back to school.
Under the Education Act of 1996, parents are breaking the law if their child does not attend school regularly and there is no “reasonable justification”.
The letter from the official who represents the school states: “A lack of school harms a student’s chance of getting a good education. It reduces future life prospects, disrupts everyday school life and the learning of others.”
“It can leave a student and the community vulnerable to antisocial behavior and juvenile delinquency.
“I am particularly concerned that despite knowing the seriousness of the situation, you (not only) failed to ensure your child’s regular school attendance (nor did you attend meetings or use the support offered).
With this in mind, I have no choice but to commence criminal proceedings for the more serious crime under the Education Act 1996 contrary to Section 444 (1A).
“This offense means that if the courts find you guilty, they can fine up to £ 2,500 and up to three months in prison.”
Unemployed Katy says she has no plans to bring her son and daughter back to school – despite the written warning – after her area fell under level two lockdown restrictions.
Katy of Redcar, North Yorks said, “There are no two ways if I get this virus I’ll die.
“I am a single parent and have no family to help the children. I cannot take that risk.
“If I have a cold or the flu, I always get it and am beaten for six.
“The virus has killed thousands of people and we’re all going to be locked up again and it looks like it’s going to get worse.
“I tried to explain it to them, but they just don’t listen.
“They tried to set up meetings for me but it’s like falling on deaf ears. I’m petrified because I got the virus so I can’t leave the house.
“Even if other people took them to school, the number of people they would come into contact with would not be certain.
“Damien has asthma too, so it’s not just about me.
“The Education Welfare Officer was on my doorstep to hold the meeting, but it didn’t go very far.
“Now they’re threatening me to go to court. I’m not sure I can go because I’m just too scared.”