When children or teens refuse to go to school, it presents one of the most difficult situations for parents to cope with. The first important question we assess is why the child is refusing school. Is he/she anxious about something or experiencing panic attacks in response to a stressful situation? Is he/she being teased or bullied, struggling academically, or refusing for some other reason? An experienced clinician can help gently tease apart the many complex issues that may be involved. We work with parents, as well as the school, to develop a plan to help kids be successful in returning to school and getting back on track.

Helpful resources for school refusal include information from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) on school refusal, as well as Christopher Kearney’s classic book on school refusal, School Refusal Behavior in Youth.

Are you interested in a parent education/support group about school refusal?

If we have 4 families able to participate, we will start a 6-week class in October 2014. Call Maria Hanelin at (206) 374-0109 if interested and specify whether you would be able to attend in person, via webcam, or both.