What should I do when my child doesn’t want to go to school?

While all children at some time or other don’t want to go to school, with some children it becomes a real issue. How does a parent deal with a child who genuinely does not want to go to school? The first thing to do is to speak to your child. Is there a bully at school? Is there a test today? Do they owe overdue homework? Do they have problems with their teacher? Some children really have a school phobia. Some children really do not want to leave their parent at home. Some children just don’t like school. If the child cannot verbalize the reasons for not wanting to go to school, then the next step is to speak to the teacher. Is there a problem in the classroom? Is there unfinished work hanging over the child’s head? Is there a conflict with another child or teacher? Again, if there is no apparent reason, then a meeting with the school resource team is in order. At that meeting, a plan must be developed to encourage the child to attend school. Perhaps a quiet place – like the resource room – to sit for a few minutes at the beginning of the day, until they are ready to go to their classroom. Perhaps an activity that they like at the beginning of the day – e.g. quiet reading time. This time away from the class will be in place for a couple of weeks until the child becomes more at ease at school. Hopefully, with team work, your child will be able to face their dislike of going to school.

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