Attending school is compulsory for all compulsory school age children - that is, children aged between 6 and 16 years [Education Act 1972 (SA) s 5]. Each child of compulsory school age is required to be enrolled at a primary or secondary school and if absent from school the parent must, within a reasonable time, give a written explanation for the absence [Education Act 1972 (SA) s 76(2)(c)].
There are now provisions requiring children to remain in full time education until they turn 17. Under the Education Act 1972 children of compulsory education age (i.e. 16) must remain in full time education or training until they turn 17 or gain a qualification.
Under section 78 of the Education Act 1972 (SA) it is an offence to employ a child of compulsory school or education age during school hours or during hours at which participation in an approved learning program is required. The maximum penalty for this offence is $5000.
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