The district may file a PINS (Person In Need of Supervision) petition in Family Court on any student under the age of 16 (18 as of November 2001) who demonstrates that he or she requires supervision and treatment by:
a. Being habitually truant and not attending school as required by part one of Article 65 of the Education Law.
b. Engaging in an ongoing or continual course of conduct which makes the student ungovernable, or hl:lbitually disobedient and beyond the lawful control of the school.
All Albany County PINS (Person In Need of Supervision) except documented runaways are initially referred for diversion services. PINS Diversion lasts from 0-6 months and involves services from Probation, DSS, and Mental Health. Probation provides supervision while the Department of Social Services and County Mental Health provide evaluations and counseling services to the chi.Id and family. PINS cases receiving diversion services are only forwarded to Family Court after all attempts at resolution have been deemed unsuccessful.
For “Truancy”, complaints need to document a pattern of illegal absences from school. School districts filing PINS complaints will be required to attend the PIR (Preliminary Intake Review) conference along with the respondent and his/her parent(s). If a representative of the school does not attend, the matter will be closed. School staff should bring the following documents to the PIR: academic records, discipline referrals, social and family history, psychological and/or psychiatric reports and Individual Education Plans if there are any. Releases for this information will be signed at the meeting.
For “Ungovernable” complaints, a pattern of incorrigible, ungovernable or habitually disobedient behavior is required. For school complaints, the specific allegations must be cited on the complaint as well as a description of any prior school action taken to resolve the problem. Schools are, again, required to submit supporting documentation such as behavior referrals and discipline records.
As a PINS case evolves through the 0-6 month time frame, various meetings and reassessments are held to determine the case progress or lack thereof. If it appears that diversion services are not succeeding, an Administrative Hearing is held at Probation with all relevant parties invited to attend. At that time, the child is given his/her last warning that Family Court access is imminent if the behavior does not change.
Policy Amended: May 21, 2001