Parent's faking divorce for kids' future

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London, Mar 19 (UNI) Most parents can go to any extent for the their children's education but few would go to the lengths of several Spanish couples who keep their marital life at stake or at least fake doing so for their kids' future.

According to experts, some parents in Spain were divorcing just to earn extra points to get their offspring into the top schools.

Since last year, children of divorced or separated couples got two extra points when education authorities decided which school the offspring will go to.

Statistics reveal that number of divorces or official separations rose from 259 in January 2007 to 387 in March 2007.

Questions have been raised about how keen many couples were to wrap up their divorces before the March 31 deadline for applications for school places.

Parents who manipulate the system were helped by the ''express divorce'', which became law in 2005. It was found that a few weeks after couples asked for official separations, they ended up in front of the same court to request reconciliation -- just after they completed their school applications.

''If it is proved parents provided false information then their applications may be rejected,'' the Guardian quoted an education spokeswoman for the regional government as saying.

As many as 26 cases of fraud were uncovered, involving couples who claimed to be divorced or separated in order to win extra school points, but were actually living together. Though no police action was taken but the school entry applications for children of the offending couples were dismissed.

UNI XC SYU RN1739

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