A Wanaka area couple appeared in the Queenstown District
Court yesterday charged with failing or refusing to ensure a
child was enrolled in a registered school from April 23 last
The couple are defending the charge, laid under the Education
The matter is a non-imprisonable offence.
The court was told there was evidence from the Ministry of
Education Dunedin office the child was removed from the
school roll in April last year and did not return to the
school ''despite numerous communications''.
It was alleged the couple advised the school in March last
year the child would not be returning and, after 20
consecutive days of being absent, the child was removed from
the roll. The child was also not enrolled at any other school
in the area for the remainder of the year.
The ministry had been advised the child was now enrolled at a
high school, but there was no information about the child's
attendance at this stage.
Defence counsel Bill Dawkins, of Invercargill, said his
clients would defend the charge, but at yesterday's status
hearing refused to divulge details of the defence.
''Regrettably, the prosecution hasn't seen that it cannot
succeed in this prosecution. There is a way out for it right
''It is a status hearing ... but I'm advising the court that
these charges are going to be defended on the facts and a
number of legal issues.''
Mr Dawkins said given the child was now enrolled at a high
school, the informant had a discretion to discontinue
''They did have the opportunity to walk away from this,'' he
Judge Kevin Phillips remanded the matter to March 11 to
allocate a date for the defended hearing.