PARENTS

Home Schooling Mum Jailed For Children's 'Truancy'

03/09/2014 14:20 | Updated 20 May 2015

Mum of six jailed in home schooling row

A mum of six has been jailed after a row about home schooling her children.

Monica O'Connor, 47, and her husband Eddie O'Neill, 49, from Tullow, County Carlow, were both found guilty of not sending two of their kids to local schools on and since, November 14, 2012.

The parents were fined €2,000 by Carlow District Court in June of last year but they didn't pay up.

As a result, the couple were arrested and sentenced to 10 days each, five days for their son Oran, 13, and five for their daughter Elva, 10.

Mrs O'Connor has now been taken to prison and her husband will go to jail soon after she's released.

The couple claim it is their right to educate their children at home and that they should not have to be continually monitored and scrutinised.

They didn't register Oran and Elva as home schooled and have not registered their youngest child Eamonn, six. Their other children are now adults, but were home schooled.

Before Mrs O'Connor was taken away to the Dochas Centre at Mountjoy prison she said: "I'm not happy about this at all. I'm not looking forward to it (jail) but it's an inevitability.

"It's the unknowable that I'm afraid of. I've been so keyed up about what's happening and the waiting game that we've had to endure about when I would be jailed and so have the children.

"We feel as if we have been in a limbo land. We believe that what is happening to us is an attack on the family. We feel the state are trying to police every way of life. Our lives are being put on hold because of this since last year. We just want this to end.

"We are standing up for a principle."

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