Justice Robin Jean Davis speaks during the first of 14 regional truancy meetings Sept. 13 at the old Kanawha County Courthouse. (Photos by Michael Switzer courtesy of the state Supreme Court)

Circuit Judge Alan Moats speaks during the truancy meeting.

Kanawha circuit judges Jennifer Bailey and Duke Bloom listen during the first regional truancy meeting.

CHARLESTON -- Supreme Court Justice Robin Jean Davis and Nineteenth Circuit Judge Alan Moats have started the 14 regional meetings on truancy.

The first one was Sept. 13 in the old Kanawha County Courthouse. Davis and Moats

The rest of the tentative schedule is:

* 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 23, Main Courtroom, Greenbrier County Courthouse, Lewisburg

* 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 7, Courtroom No. 3, Cabell County Courthouse, Huntington

* 10 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, Circuit Judge Gary Johnson's Courtroom, Nicholas County Courthouse, Summersville

* 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 28, Courtroom No. 302, Logan County Courthouse,
Logan

* 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 1, Berkeley County Judicial Center, Martinsburg

* 10 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 2, Mineral County Courthouse, Keyser

* 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 3, Randolph County Courthouse, Elkins

* 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 4, Courtroom B, Raleigh County Courthouse, Beckley

* 10 a.m. Monday, Nov. 7, Main Circuit Court Courtroom, Mason County
Courthouse, Point Pleasant

* 10 a.m. Monday, Nov. 14, Circuit Judge Arthur Recht's Courtroom,
City/County Building, Wheeling

* 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15, Circuit Judge J.D. Beane's Courtroom, Wood
County Judicial Building, Parkersburg

The schedule is tentative because something emergent may come up either before the Supreme Court or before Moats in Barbour or Taylor Counties that would necessitate rescheduling.

Davis encourages parents, educators, social service workers, court officials, and anyone who works with children on a daily basis to attend. Davis has been appointed by the Supreme Court to coordinate and expand judicial truancy programs in West Virginia.

She will be accompanied at all the meetings by Moats, who began an anti-truancy and dropout program in his area when he realized he was seeing many of the same people appear before him in criminal cases who had appeared before him in truancy cases. He did some research and discovered that more than 50 percent of Barbour and Taylor County students miss more than 10 days of school each year.

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