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In re Samantha C.

Supreme Court of Nebraska

March 7, 2014

In re Interest of Samantha C., a child under 18 years of age.
v.
Samantha C., appellant. State of Nebraska, appellee,

Page 666

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 667

Appeal from the County Court for Dodge County: KENNETH VAMPOLA, Judge.

Affirmed.

Shane J. Placek, of Sidner Law, for appellant.

Sara VanBrandwijk, Deputy Dodge County Attorney, for appellee.

Wright, Connolly, Stephan, Mccormack, Miller-Lerman, and Cassel, JJ.

Syllabus by the Court

1. Juvenile Courts: Appeal and Error. An appellate court reviews juvenile cases de novo on the record and reaches its conclusions independently of the juvenile court's findings.

2. Statutes. The meaning of a statute is a question of law.

3. Juvenile Courts: Parental Rights. The foremost purpose and objective of the Nebraska Juvenile Code is the protection of a juvenile's best interests, with preservation of the juvenile's familial relationship with his or her parents where the continuation of such parental relationship is proper under the law. The goal of juvenile proceedings is not to punish parents, but to protect children and promote their best interests.

4. Juvenile Courts: Minors. The Nebraska Juvenile Code must be construed to assure the rights of all juveniles to care and protection.

5. Legislature: Intent. The intent of the Legislature is expressed by omission as well as by inclusion.

Cassel, J.

INTRODUCTION

Samantha C. appeals from a juvenile court order adjudicating her as being " habitually truant from ... school." [1] She primarily argues that the State was required to first prove her school's compliance with the remedial measures set forth in a compulsory education statute.[2] Because (1) the Nebraska [287 Neb. 645] Juvenile Code and the compulsory education statutes are separate statutory enactments with distinct purposes and goals and ...


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