Parents lose custody of child following repeated school absences

Appeal court judges in Évora have ruled that a 13-year-old boy who can neither read nor write should be removed from his parents’ (“immediately and energetically”) to spend “at least a year in residential care”, where, they believe his educational failings could be rectified. “No more time can be lost with ineffective measures” of the kind that have been adopted in the past, said the judges, who stressed that the cause of the boy’s absenteeism “lies not with the school but with the family”. According to reports, the boy’s elder brother suffered a similar history, to the point that the “years passed until it was too late for the State to intervene” (ie the elder sibling reached his 18th birthday and no longer required to remain at school).