Your Child Does Not Want to Go to School - What Can You Do?

School Refusal is Common

Nearly one-third of all children go through a phase when they don’t want to go to school. This happens most often in kids who are between 5 and 7, and between 11 and 14. They may develop a fear of leaving the comfort of their home. They may insist that they feel sick to avoid having to go to school. Or they may display negative behaviors, such as: 

  • Anxiety
  • Excessive crying
  • Temper tantrums
  • Refusing to stay alone in their rooms
  • Following the parent through the house
  • Wanting to be held all the time
  • Worrying about the parents’ safety
  • Worrying about their own safety
  • Fears of animals and monsters
  • Inability to fall asleep
  • Bad dreams

Common Reasons for School Refusal

  • Wishing to avoid situations at school that cause feelings of anxiety or depression
  • Wanting to avoid certain people whom the child dislikes
  • Wanting to avoid situations that cause discomfort, such as taking tests or having to speak in front of the class
  • Wanting to get the attention of family members
  • Wanting to spend school time doing more enjoyable things with one’s parents or family members

In our next article, we'll address what parents can do to help their children love and succeed in school.