School Refuser - The Blog

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

When does school refusal start?

One of the points put to me concerns early recognition of school refusal, and the need to respond appropriately and as early as possible.

Procedures must be put in place for SR to be picked up at an early stage as possible and acted upon quickly, there has to be immediate access to 'professionals' instead of months waiting for referrals, as we know that the quicker this is dealt with the better.

But when does school refusal start?

Almost every child will have a day, or a few, where they attempt to refuse to attend school. This may just be a 'Do I have to go?' or a 'I've got a sore tummy, must I go?', or it could be a refusal to get dressed, or get in the school transport.

Any one of these could be the first sign of a serious case of school refusal, or it might be a one off attempt at exerting a little bit of control on their life. How can we tell? And when do we start to consult the school, or the doctor?

It was also a question put to me by a deputy head teacher, with responsibility for school refusers. Of course, I had no real answer!

One of our Forum topics is on 'Early signs', but so far there is nothing to help us know when to call in the professionals.

Perhaps there needs to be set number of days of absence? Perhaps there already is?

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