Parents

School avoidance/school refusal is not a clinical diagnosis. It is a symptom of an emotional disorder or other underlying issues which propels the avoidance.

Therefore, there is no diagnostic code for school avoidance in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition: DSM-5, which is the definitive authority that defines and classifies mental health disorders.

0 %

of youth display school refusal behavior at some point during their lives

0 %

of kids who have anxiety disorders that actually receive treatment

1 M

# of American youth who are currently school avoidant *

The Basics

School Avoidance is Not a Diagnosis

School avoidance/school refusal is not a clinical diagnosis. It is a symptom of an emotional disorder or other underlying issues which propels the avoidance.

Therefore, there is no diagnostic code for school avoidance in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition: DSM-5, which is the definitive authority that defines and classifies mental health disorders.

Kids Are Not Doing This Purposely

Kids who have school avoidance don’t want to feel this way. Many kids themselves can’t explain what is driving their school avoidance. They want help, hope, and support and shouldn’t be treated with punitive measures.

Bullying and School Avoidance

Sometimes school avoidance is caused by bullying. If bullying is not handled correctly by the school or resolved to the level of comfort necessary for your child, of course, going to school is going to feel uncomfortable.

As with any problem that your child encounters, you must take quick action to get your school to respond quickly and correctly. This Stop Bullying website managed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has beneficial information and resources for families.

Parents of Kids with School Avoidance Feel Judged, Misunderstood, and Even Blamed Sometimes

The challenges of school avoidance are often magnified by the lack of understanding among friends, family, and sometimes your school. It can be isolating and scary.

Getting support from others who understand exactly how you feel is an important factor to help you keep up your strength, advocacy, and sanity for your child. And, of course, you didn’t cause this.

School Avoidance; Working With Your School To Help Your Child

The relationship and communication between you and your school are pretty darn important. We have a whole page dedicated to helping you navigate your partnership with the school.

We discuss who within the school can help you, your rights, accommodations, and modifications that will help your child’s reintegration to school, and strategies your school can employ.

Next Steps

Early Interventions = The Best Outcomes

The words are simple, but the meaning is crucial.
Parents are their kids’ greatest advocates. And school avoidance can seem daunting at times.

Just like our kids, we are humans. Sometimes we may procrastinate, avoid or justify potential red flags because it is freakin scary and seems overwhelming.

When it comes to your kids, your instincts and gut feelings are usually right. So, listen to them and reach out for help.

School Avoidance Sucks, What Can I Do?

This is why we are here (the school avoidance alliance); to help you and support you along the way.

Hang in there. You are your child’s greatest advocate, and you know your child better than anyone.

Your school may tell you that all is well at school or that they don’t think there is a problem.

Don’t let this throw you off track,
remember, you know your child best!

The same is true when you consult with a therapist or doctor. Don’t let their degree cause you to second guess yourself.

You know your child best!

Avoid Common Pitfalls! Learn How Your School Can Help Your School Avoidant Child

Coming December 6th

We will send it to you for FREE on release day

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