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What to do when a kid refuses to go to school

Is your kid scared of going to school? Are you confused on how to handle the problem of school refusal? Determine the reason for your Kid's refusal and try to solve them. Mentioned in this article are a few strategies which you can follow when your child refuses to go to school.

Getting up early in the morning and moving to school is one of the frustrating tasks for the children. Only some kids go to school with a lot of enthusiasm while few others go to school without much interest. On Monday morning it is usual in many houses that the parents can listen to phrases such as "Mummy! My stomach is paining. I am tired to go to school" from the kids. It is normal that the kids will find it difficult to attend their school on Monday after enjoying their weekend holidays and so they will list out any fake reasons and will try to avoid attending the school. But it is really a problem when a kid frequently says any reason and refuses to go to school. In such situations, the parents must consider it seriously and behave responsibly.

What to do when your child refuses to go to school?

Education is very important for kids and we should not skip the classes for lame reasons. Even if the kids miss one class, then the next day it becomes a burden for the kids to cope up with their lessons and they have to complete all their pending class works. So, it is advisable that a kid must attend his/her classes regularly without any breaks and the parents should not encourage their kid to take a leave.

I hate studying

Normal avoidance of school on one or two days is quite usual in student life but school refusal is one serious problem which should be handled effectively. What will you do if your kid says "I hate my school or I will never go to school hereafter"? Here are some tips the parents can follow when their child refuses to go to school.

Identify the reason for your child's refusal to go to school

Do not shout at your kid out of anger and never struggle with your child and force them to leave for school when he/she refuses to go to school. Avoid giving lengthy lectures about the importance of education and school to your kid as it may make things worse and have a negative reflection on the problem. Instead, talk to them out of concern and identify the real reason for their refusal to go to school. Understand your child's feeling and get to know what is bothering him/her. There are so many reasons for a child to avoid going to school. Mentioned below are some common reasons you can expect from a child for his/her refusal to go to school

  • Physical complaints or they may feel tired because of exhaustive learning and listening.
  • Anxiety about exams, tests, assignments, projects, etc.
  • Scared of teacher's scolding
  • Difficulty in following school rules
  • Bullying or Trouble with friends
  • Work load or difficulty in learning and scoring good grades

Figure out the exact reason for your kid's refusal and try to find the solution. If your kid is depressed for getting low marks in exam, help him/her on how to overcome depression after failure in exam. But never give permission for your kids to skip their classes. Be a problem-solver because as a parent it is your responsibility to make things correct for your kid. Remember, some kids don't open much and share what bothers them. During such situation don't force your kid to tell the reason. Go with the flow of your kid, observe them and try to find what bothers your kid. You can also have a meeting with your kid's teachers and find out the exact problem.

Motivate your kid

Whatever the reason for school refusal is remember to be kind with your kid and help your kid to come out of the problem. Tell your kid not to be upset with the school and try to remove the negative thoughts about school in your child's mind. Encourage them with positive words. Learn how to motivate your child to study and help them to cope up with the school activities. Create confidence in your kid by saying that you are there for him/her to solve his/her problem. Also, help your kid to identify his/her talent and motivate him/her to go to school. Explain to your kid how you have enjoyed your school life in a positive way so that the kid will consider the school as a fun-filled learning environment and will try to concentrate on studies on an optimistic note. Handle your kid softly and induce them to go to school.

Explain the consequences of missing the school

When your kid refuses to go to school, explain to them the consequences he/she has to face in the school for not attending the classes. Remind the work to be completed in the school and also mention him/her that missing the classes will affect his/her attendance record and the grades. Tell your child that he/she cannot play with his/her friends if there are a lot of pending works to complete. Clearly explain to your kid that it would be difficult for him/her to cope up with the lessons if the classes are not attended.

Make your kid's home stay unappealing

Some kids love to stay in the home and so they will mention any fake reason to avoid attending the school and will plan to do all the fun things at home. Parents should remove this negative thought from the kid by enforcing some strict rules at home when they did not attend the school and stay at home. Mention them that if he/she is sick, then he/she must stay in the bed and should not watch TV or play video games. If you make your kid's home stay unappealing then automatically the child will prepare his/her mind to go to school. Clarify them that home is not a fun place to stay during the school days and ask them to have all the fun at home during the holidays.

Fix a meeting with the teachers

One of the best ways to solve your kid's school refusal problem is by having a meeting with your kid's class teachers. Have a deep analysis with the teachers and find out the exact reason for your kid's disinterest in school. Talk to them and get to know how they behave in the class, how they perform in exams and other activities. Explain your kid's problem to the teachers and seek help from them because they are the ones who take care of the kids in the school. Also report the authorities in the school if your child is facing any bullying problems or abuses. It is the responsibility of the school to provide a happy learning environment for the kids, so have a meeting with the teachers and rectify the problem.

Final words

Not all the kids are same. Every child behaves differently and might suffer from anxiety and stress at different levels depending on the situation and the problems they face at school. It is not sure that the strategies mentioned above will work for your kid because not every kid will respond positively to the methods and strategies you follow. So never get disappointed when you can't convince your kid by adopting any of the strategies mentioned in this article. Consider your child's mental health issues if they frequently refuse to go to school. Fix an appointment with the school counselor or a doctor and get proper treatment if your kid suffers from anxiety, stress or any other mental illness. Treating your kid's mental illness will definitely help to delete your kid's refusal to go to school.


Author: Umesh21 Sep 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 5

It happens with many children that they refuse to go to school. When they are taken to the nursery for the first time from the comfort of the home, they cannot take the long hours of discipline imposed on them as it is a new and binding thing on them.

Meanwhile, they are asked to learn a few things and are asked to pronounce them or recite them which soon becomes a monotonous activity for them and they start resisting these suggestions.

This is the beginning and when it culminates in a bigger school bag full of copybooks etc, they become more resistive and start searching excuses for not going to school. These problems are to be tackled in polite and subtle ways. First of all the coziness and comforts of home are to be seen critically and should not be provided blindly to the children. Parents have to be tough on these matters sometimes and should not give the liberty to children for everything. Then only the children will able to compare the school environment with that of home and may show their preference accordingly.

Author: DR.N.V. Srinivasa Rao21 Sep 2018 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 4

A good narration by the author.
There may be many reasons for a child not showing interest to go to school. It is the responsibility of the parents to understand the reasons for a kid not showing interest in going to school and if they address the same, the child will go to school with interest. Some kids may not be able to cope up with the studies and they may be having some understanding problems. Then the parents should support the children and make them understand the subject by arranging some additional support.
These days some kids are spending more time with their electronic gadgets and never sleep on time. For them, it is very difficult to get up in time and go to school. Here also the responsibility of the parents will become important. The parents should see that the kids will go to bed early and get up early. From their early days, if parents start teaching them these good habits, they will become regular in going to school.

Author: Reena Upadhya21 Sep 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 7

In the initial phase itself when the kid is going through school refusal, parents should determine the cause and get it corrected. Kid not attending school for a prolonged duration is rather, a sign of a disorder. It is important to listen to the kids. As the author has mentioned, some kids do not open up easily. In such cases, it is important to win their trust and help them open up. In the case of those kids who are very friendly with their parents, such problems do not occur. It is very much possible that the kid does not want to attend school because there is something not so right happening at school. It may be bullying or maybe teacher trouble. Parents, instead of becoming judgmental, should learn to be supportive. Don't just jump in and state the verdict.

Parents have to understand the situation from the child's point of view. The problem will never get solved until the root cause is determined. Once the true cause of not attending the school is discovered, measures can be taken to correct it which can help kid gain confidence. Don't interfere when they speak. Ask them about the homework, class work, teachers, fellow students, studies and rest of the things. The more they speak, the more openly they will be able to speak about their problem. If parents listen to their kids on daily basis and help them sort out the things as soon as the issues arrive, there would not arrive a day when kids would find excuses to skip school.

In western countries, cognitive behavioral therapy is used by the therapists during which child's anxiety thoughts and fear are managed. They slowly adopt the exposure treatment where they gradually introduce the kids to the environment of the school.

Author: Sheo Shankar Jha21 Sep 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 6

If the anxiety of the kids is not addressed in a reasonable manner, they remain in the grip of insecurity in the school. A prolonged state of such unresolved issues may have a very adverse impact on the minds of the kids.

The parents should sort out the problems of the kids in more amicable ways by taking the kids into confidence. The cordial talks initiated by them would solve the core issues. They should show all their genuine affections while making queries about the nature of teachers, the environmental issues of the school or whether the kid has some problem with any of his known colleagues etc. The more he is open to his parents, easier it will be to fix the problems.
The parents should have enough patience while the kid is narrating something relating to the issues affecting his peace in the school. Sometimes, his deliberation may be fictional or seem to be exaggerated. Even if it is so, the parents should show their maturity while dealing with the kids and they should be able to wipe out their unnecessary anxieties. A conducive environment in the home and the affectionate behavior of the parents will heal up the kids speedily.

The parents should initiate a dialogue with the class teacher or the person concerned with which his mind is constantly agitated.

Author: K Mohan23 Sep 2018 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 3

For the parents, making the children going to school is a big task. From early morning they have to prepare the child mentally to attend the school and all sorts of promises we make to pacify the child. The mother should not pamper the child too much and she must tell about the importance of the studies and school. And while in the house itself, he must be practiced to wear a uniform, school bag, lunch box etc, and that preparation would make a habit for the child and he won't cry. Moreover, put the child in such a school where there are more activities for their age and not the serious studies. Children love to play and if the school can create that atmosphere with the help of a caring teacher, the children would love to go to school.

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