After long holidays, most of the kids I have seen refuse to go to school. Has this happened to you before? If so, you are in the right place. Here, I am going to share with you what you can do if your kids refuse to go to school.
Being absent from school for one or two days is normal. But the reluctance to go to school for more than a week is one of the main problems experienced by many parents for their child. If your child constantly refuses to go back to school even after your several attempts to encourage him to do so, your child might be struggling with a psychological issue, which is known as school refusal.
Approximately two percent of kids out there are struggling with school refusal. This leads them to become more distressed, which can cause longer absences. Compared to truancy, kids who have been diagnosed with this psychological issue usually don’t show behavioral problems. This means that they choose to stay inside the house rather than going to school and socialize with their schoolmates.
School refusal is a psychological problem that usually happens because of a long period of being absent – mainly due to holidays or illnesses. Your kids may also develop this problem because of big changes in their life, such as enrolling in a new university.
School refusal is the result of a complicated interaction between a wide range of risk factors, such as the kid (usually because of the fear to fail), the school (because of fear of getting bullied), their family (because of being too strict), and social challenges (because of the pressure they carry to excel as an academic).
What Can You Do?
CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) is the number one intervention parents should consider in treating the school refusal problem of their kids. This treatment is designed to promote relaxation and let them face their fears gradually.
The following are the things you can do to encourage your child to go to school.
Ask for Help
Unfortunately, most parents and school administrators these days usually wait for the problem to show serious signs and symptoms before addressing the problem.
Sadly, each day that your kids missed going to school can negatively affect their performance academically. Besides that, prolonged absences can cause your kids to have poor social adjustment, show behavioral and emotional problems, and, worse still, get dropped out of school.
Approach Them Kindly But Firmly
Considering that school refusal is a distressing situation for your child, I recommend you always show how much you love them. Do not forget to convey kindness to them, especially when they are in a distressing situation like this.
You can show kindness by allowing time to listen to their rants, keep yourself calm while they are so frustrated about themselves, and show them affection, not just emotionally but also physically.
As mentioned, you should approach them kindly but firmly while attempting to solve the problem faced by your child. You may start a conversation like, “I know what you feel every time you go to school. But you can surpass this as we are here to support you. You need to attend each class you have because it is only for your good in the future.”
Determine The Potential Triggers
In a situation where both of you are having a good time, I recommend that you begin a conversation with your child, asking them the possible challenges they feel about going to school. This could be the first and easiest step you can take towards solving the problem of developing an effective strategy in managing them.
I constantly notice that most kids usually complain about stomach aches or headaches to their teachers or other school staff whenever they are in school. If this happens more frequently, it would be better to take your child for a check-up to determine if they have problems other than school refusal.
I can say that encouraging your child to go to school every weekday is quite hard. But with the tips I mentioned above, you can work it out together.