School attendance and grades

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Updated: 1/14/2003 2:29 pm
Teenagers who aren't attending school regularly may be having difficulty with peer relationships, may be underachieving academically, or have a fear of social situations. Teens who have a psychiatric mood or behavior disorder or fear of school may need professional counseling, which could include family therapy with parents. Some teens may leave for school in the morning but never arrive, choosing instead to spend the day alone or with friends, with parents not knowing their kids aren't there until they receive a phone call. School used to be a safe environment for kids, but increasingly in the U-S school itself may be a dangerous place, and some teens may fear bodily injury. The increased prevalence of gangs has resulted in a marked increase in violence in public schools, some of which have become centers of gang activities. It's important to determine why a child isn't attending, or doesn't want to attend, school and, especially if grades are being affected, to take action. Talk to your child's teacher. If the child needs academic help, find out what sort of tutoring is available. If the child is having emotional difficulties, check with a doctor to find out what social services or counseling might be right for your child and is available.

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