Clonard College hosted the Family engagement evening on Monday 26 July with Psychologist and author Joanne Garfi. Thank you to those families who attended the presentation, which included important data and background linking fear anxiety and avoidance to school refusal, as well as signs that can be connected to anxiety and school refusal such as lethargy, change in moods and lack of enthusiasm for things that are usually enjoyed. A focus on a partnership approach between the family and school was also emphasised, in addition to developing clear and consistent rewards and consequences relating to school attendance. Proven strategies to assist in the management of anxiety identified are mindfulness, relaxation, breathing exercises, mandala’s, physical exercise, and yoga, all of which are included in Conard’s wellbeing curriculum.

Following, is a great resource from the Victorian Department of Education and Training with ideas which may assist parents to deal with teenagers and school refusal: