Avoiding and Refusing to Go to School

This information is useful for children
Why Yale Medicine?
  • We focus on identifying and treating the underlying reasons why a child doesn't want to go to school.
  • We contribute to national research on this issue and work closely with public and private schools throughout Connecticut.
  • We have longstanding expertise in treating mental-health problems in children and specialize in connecting kids and their families to resources to address their needs.

Most children and adolescents go to school, even if they complain about it. But 10 percent to 15 percent of students are estimated to miss 10 percent or more school days each year, making them “chronically absent.” It’s a major challenge facing our schools today—and a big problem for the families of the children, too.

There are many reasons why students are chronically absent. Some have medical problems that keep them home. Some have parents who don’t make an effort to get their children to school in the morning. And a third group of children doesn’t go to school school because it’s too hard—academically, socially and/or emotionally. Those children fall into a category called “school avoidant.” At the Yale Medicine Child Study Center, we are experienced at treating the underlying issues that contribute to children avoiding school. 

Clinical Trials

New treatments for many conditions are tested in clinical trials, which ultimately bring lifesaving new drugs and devices to the patients who need them most. By participating in a clinical trial, you may get access to the most advanced treatments for your condition, and help determine their benefits for future patients.