An enhanced truancy initiative is getting ready to launch in Caddo Parish.

It's being done thanks to efforts by Volunteers for Youth Justice, the Caddo District Attorney's Office, Caddo School Board and Willis-Knighton Health System, with the help of local law enforcement.

A news conference is being held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, August 10, at the Caddo Parish School Board's Welfare and Attendance Department, located at 1638 Murphy St. That's where the new Truancy Assessment and Service Center, or TASC, will be located.

The goal of the initiative is to identify families early and provide rapid assessment and serviced in order to reduce school absenced for children in grades K-5.

"Last year, VYJ served nearly 1,500 children in grades K-5 who were identified as being truant," said VYJ Executive Director Kelli Todd. "Our goal is to cut this number in half by intervening with the families early on and providing services that will assist the family in making sure their child is attending school."

Todd adds that the overall outcome of this project will be to increase attendance, which will ultimately improve our local education system and decrease juvenile delinquency.

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