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Understanding School Refusal


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Table of Contents

Preface. Abbreviations Used in the Book.1. Introduction: School Non-Attendance. 2. Identifying and Understanding School Refusal. 3. The Nature of Anxiety. 4. Assessment. 5. Principles of Intervention and Management. 6. Working with Parents and Children. 7. Supporting Children and Young People at School. 8. Role of Home Tuition and Pupil Referral Units. 9. Strategic Planning. Appendix I: What is Known about School Refusal: Research Findings. Appendix II: Specimen Assessment Form. Appendix III: Handout for Parents. References. Subject Index. Author Index.

About the Author

Dr M. S. Thambirajah, MB BS, FRCPsych, is Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist at Walsall Teaching Primary Care Trust, UK. He has published two books on psychiatry and child mental health. Karen J. Grandison, BSc, PGCE, PG Dip, MSC, is a Senior Educational Psychologist in Walsall, and Academic and Professional Tutor at the University of Birmingham, UK. Louise De-Hayes, BA (Hons), PGCE, is Manager of the Shepwell Centre Pupil Referral Unit, Walsall.


`A book written by a child psychiatrist, an educational psychologist (EP) and a teacher from a PRU on the challenging subject of school refusal looked promising. I wasn't disappointed. This book offers a comprehensive concise review of school non-attendance and school refusal, it covers the topic thoughtfully and effectively from the perspectives of educational professionals, clinicians and the family...The interventions with schools and families are explored with reference to case examples, in the final chapters space is given to the need for strategic planning and a dip into the research and findings on school refusal is provided. The point is well made that studies in the area are mostly health rather than ecucation based, lthis handbook hopefully will prompt some much needed education based research. It is a grounded informative book, offering systemic and interactive approaches to the examination fo school refusal, looking at issues within the family, the child and the school. The section relating to working with parents is particularly detailed and wide ranging. The authors offer in an appendix a demystifying handout for parents/carers...An excellent book that bring together educational and clinical perspectives, each EP service should have a copy.` -- Debate, Chris Walker, PSI-UK
Combining educational and clinical perspectives, and with extensive use of case studies, the authors present recent research into the mental health problems associated with school refusal, such as anxiety and panic attacks, as well as the role that parental support plays in their children's school life. They also discuss the role of home tuition services and pupil referral units in extreme cases of school refusal, and provides concrete strategies for planning and organising services to manage the problem effectively. Understanding School Refusal is a valuable guide for professionals across the disciplines of education, health and social care, and will also be useful for training courses within these fields. -- Education Today
This book, written in a clear, concise and jargon-free style, offers a number of illustrative case studies as well as practical examples of assessment forms and handouts for parents. It should prove useful to teachers, education welfare officers, school health advisers and others who work with children who are reluctant to attend school. School attendance and persistent absent are high on the government's agenda. Within this big picture of non-school attendance, school refusers have been a largely hidden and under-recognised small group. This volume should help ensure that they become less so. -- Research Policy and Planning
This very readable little book address the issues surrounding school refusal and offers some very pratical ideas for rehabilitation of young people. This book is essential reading for those working with school refusers. -- Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry

Dr MS Thambirajah - is a consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist based in Walsall who has provided valuable insights into this complex area. The book is readable and does not rely on professional jargon but uses meaningful case studies to assist the reader in extracting the key themes.The book is appropriate for a wide range of educational practitioners including teachers, educational welfare officers and educational psychologists as well as colleagues in health-related services'.

-- Special
This is an interesting and useful handbook for all professionals working with children and young people. It clearly defines the different types of school non-attendance,distinguishing between truancy, parent-condoned absence, and school refusal. Furthermore, it provides a clear rationale for managing a return to school programme. -- Therapy Today

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