Urge for changes to track down children

Inga Marte ThorkildsenOSLO. Inga Marte Thorkildsen.Photo: Vidar Ruud / NTB scanpix

Oslo schools receive no help from Nav to find students who have not turned up for school start although the schools are required to try to track down the children.


Before the summer holiday this year, the Oslo schools received no help from Nav in the process of tracing students and their parents.The Labour and Welfare Directorate would not grant exemptions from the rules of confidentiality wrote Aftenposten newspaper.

Oslo schools use considerable resources to contact parents and to trace the students. At Linderud School in Groruddalen alone, 37 out of 540 pupils failed to attend school without a valid absence at the beginning of school this year. For the past seven years,1,409 children in primary schools have not met up at
school start.That corresponds to 50 school classes with 28 pupils.

At the school bureau in Oslo, Inga Marte Thorkildsen of the Sosialistisk Venstreparti (SV) said she is surprised by the numbers.

“It seems that Nav has only considered its own benefit in helping schools. I am calling for an assessment of the Children’s Convention and the best interests of children in this.Children’s right to education is more important than the parents’ right to privacy,’’ said Thorkildsen.

The school agency will now propose a legislative amendment that may open the way for schools to receive information from Nav.

Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Anniken Hauglie of Høyre (H) would not comment on the refusal to share information with the schools, but the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs pointed out that Nav normally does not have information about the student’s place of residence in addition to what is stated in the population register.

‘’In cases where a stay in Norway is not documented, the payment of children’s allowance will be suspended. Nav is not in possession of information about the child’s place of residence in such cases,’’Morten Dagre stated from the press and communication department.


© NTB scanpix / #Norway Today