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Albemarle County Newsroom


Community Forum on "Free Range Parenting"

“Free-range” parenting has been a hot topic in recent months in the news and in online forums after two Maryland children were detained while walking home from a local park. As a parent of young children, it can be difficult to gauge when and in what situations it is appropriate to leave a child unsupervised.  “Am I going to be arrested for having my children walk home from the bus?” “How far is too far from home?” "Can I leave my child in the car if it is only going to be for two minutes so I can pay for gas?" “What does ‘appropriate supervision’ look like?”

 Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville are hosting a forum on “free-range” parenting to foster a community discussion on how to provide children an opportunity to experience independence in a safe environment. The event will begin with a panel discussion with local professionals in childhood development, social services, and the police department and will be followed by a question and answer session with the audience. This event will provide a framework for understanding of how to gauge what works best for your child, dispel myths and misperceptions, and highlight local policies, practices, and expectations.
Phyllis Savides, Director of Social Services (Albemarle County)

Dr. Claudia Allen (UVA Family Stress Clinic)
Dr. Joseph Allen (Virginia Adolescent Research Group)
Sgt. Michael Gore (Charlottesville Police Department)
Jenny Jones (Charlottesville Social Services)
Corporal Tripp Martin (Albemarle County Police Department)
Lt. Steve Upman (Charlottesville Police Department)
Brad Wentz (Albemarle Social Services)
Please join us on October 27th, from 7:30 - 9:00 pm, at the Burley Middle School cafeteria (901 Rose Hill Drive, Charlottesville, VA) to learn more and ask questions.

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