Need some advice for parenting 5 year old son who refuses to go to school.

"I have a 5yr old son who refuses to go to school. Yes it is starting this early of age! I included everybody in the school to help out, psychologist, asst.principal, security, parent coordinator, even the counselor. We tried just about everything to get him in and nothing seems to work. He kicks and screams holding on to my leg and tells me school is boring and very long. I tried to make promises to him that if he goes I would buy him a toy and reward him for being a big boy. He doesn't play video games at home and I do make it very boring for him at home. I also have 2 lil children at home that need my attention as well and I can't spend my time at the school trying to get him to go. I'm very confused and aggravated and I don't know what else to do. My hands are tied behind my back!! Please try to give me some advice as to what am I doing wrong as a parent or what I didnt do!  Thanks A Billion."

Asked by Alvina after reading the article, "When Your Child Refuses to Go to School":
In Topics: School and Academics, Parenting / Our Family, Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago



Boys Town National Hotline
Sep 25, 2009
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What the Expert Says:

First, It sounds like you have tried many things to get your son to go to school, so try not to be so hard on yourself.  You may not have done anything wrong, and chances are that you didn't "forget" to do something that would make your son want to go to school.  There are many different possible explanations as to why he's refusing to go to school.  

Since your son is only 5 years old, behaving this way is the only way he knows how to communicate to you that either he's afraid to go there because of something that's happening there, or he needs something from you that he's not getting.  Because he can't articulate in words what's wrong, many parents that have been in your shoes have found that it's a matter of trial and error to find out what's going on.  Instead of focusing so much on the solution, try to turn your attention toward what may be causing him to get so upset.  

You mentioned that you have two other small children to watch over.  Is it possible that your son is feeling really left out?  He could be using his tantrums as a way to get your attention.  Do you spend time alone with him everyday, even if it's only for a few minutes to listen to him talk about his day, or to read him a bedtime story?  Try making a specific effort to do this everyday for two weeks and see if you notice a difference in his behavior.  

Your son may also be acting this way because he is having a tough time at school making or keeping friends.  It could also be something as simple as he doesn't like the school lunch so he dreads going to school everyday.  

What time does your son go to bed at night?  Ask your pediatrician how many hours of sleep he needs and make sure he's getting it........every night!  It sounds simple, but at the age of 5, your son may also still be struggling with the transition from not taking a daytime nap.  If he's extremely tired, his fatigue may be coming out as a tantrum instead.  

These are just some things to get you thinking in the right direction.  If you've considered all of this, and still no change, give us a call on our crisis line 24/7, and we can speak with you further about other options.  Hang in there and don't give up!

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Additional Answers (1)

beem80 writes:

I am not sure if this will help him but you can try this reading program.  It good and fun reading program. You  go  I hope this program will motivate him to go school.  Please walk him through and give him compliment and encouragement.  Hope you will see improvement in him.

Good Luck!
> 60 days ago

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