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Capital blackspot for kids' truancy.

EDINBURGH has been named as Scotland's truancy blackspot.

Pupils missed almost 1.8million half-days at school last year - 250,287 of them in the capital.

Fife took second spot in the truancy table, with 172,586 absences, and Glasgow schools were the third worst, with 152,008.

The Scottish Executive figures also reveal that an average of 4600 pupils are absent from school every day.

Education chiefs in Edinburgh say the high figure is a result of confusion over a new system which meant some non-truancy absences were incorrectly included.

Council education spokesman the Rev Ewan Aitken said: 'We have tried to rectify this by sending new advice out to our schools this year.'

Education Minister Peter Peacock said: 'Too many pupils are trying truancy.

'Pupils who miss school pay a high price - damaging their school results, career prospects and life chances.'

A text message system warning parents when their child is not in school is one measure introduced by the Executive.
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Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Apr 3, 2005
Words:162
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