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.