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Persistent School Non- Attendance. Aims and Outcomes Participants will have an understanding of persistent school non attendance and the associated risk.

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Presentation on theme: "Persistent School Non- Attendance. Aims and Outcomes Participants will have an understanding of persistent school non attendance and the associated risk."— Presentation transcript:

1 Persistent School Non- Attendance

2 Aims and Outcomes Participants will have an understanding of persistent school non attendance and the associated risk factors Participants will develop an understanding of Kearneys four functions of school non-attendance Participants will explore phases of identification, planning and intervention within a staged intervention approach

3 Why school non attendance? The problem In 2008 – 2009 rate of non attendance was 8.8% Equates to every pupil missing 34 half days Costs Linked to delinquency Linked to levels of attainment Effect on future mental health Effect on future employment options

4 Activity 1: Risk Factors In small groups generate some risk factors related to the following headings: Institutional Family Individual

5 Examples of Institutional Risk Factors Size of school Structure of school day Disruption and instability of school staff Authoritarian management styles Hostile pupil teacher relationships Specific areas of school are hotspots for bullying

6 Examples of Family Risk Factors Views of education and value of full attendance Domestic violence Atypical parental working patterns Inadequate or poor parenting Birth of a new child Parental separation Practical problems bringing child to school

7 Examples of Individual Risk Factors Social isolation/few friends Bullying Peer pressure Children having to be carers Sudden traumatic event Moving house or school Parental illness Ethnic language issues

8 Activity 2: Physical Signs or Symptoms In small groups consider what physical signs or symptoms a child or young person might present with

9 School non attendance: definition Past terms: truancy vs school phobia Focus on within child deficit Present terms: persistent school non attendance Focus on why child is not attending Looks at the function of non attendance

10 Four Functions of Non-Attendance Avoidance of stimuli that provoke general negative affectivity Avoidance of aversive social or evaluative situations at school Attention seeking behaviour Pursuit of tangible reinforcement outside of school

11 Activity 3: Four Functions The worksheet for this activity outlines some possible scenarios for school non attendance. From the information given discuss a) the most probable function of the non attendance and b) what other information you would need to gain more evidence for your hypothesis.

12 Function One: Avoidance of stimuli that provoke general negative affectivity The negative stimuli may not be identified Child may experience feelings such as: Being sick Headaches Stomach pains Poor sleeping patterns Difficulty in concentrating Restless Emotional trembling, shaking, crying

13 Function Two: Avoidance of aversive social or evaluative situations at school Negative stimulus tends to be more specific For example Poor peer relationships Possible learning difficulties separation anxiety Signs/symptoms are similar to Function One

14 Function Three: Attention seeking behaviour Tends to be younger children who display this behaviour (mean age of 9.5) Behaviours can be manipulative & controlling Signs & symptoms are similar to Function One

15 Function Four: Pursuit of tangible reinforcement outside of school Common reinforcers can be: Peer group Using or abusing drugs and/or alcohol Wanting to stay at home Attention problems & more delinquent/ aggressive behaviour are more common than in the other groups Difficulties are less anxiety based

16 Activity 4: Current Practice In small groups discuss what preventative measures you have in place to deal with persistent school non attendance

17 Preventative approaches within school Monitoring attendance patterns Establishment of safe areas Monitoring of hot spots Clear anti-bullying policy Pastoral support systems Engaging families Social skills development Circle time

18 Staged Intervention Schools should be able to effectively assess and support the majority of pupils support needs CDOs and teachers have a central role in the identification of additional support needs SI allows for a comprehensive approach to gathering information

19 Staged Intervention: Stage 1 If patterns of non-attendance are consistent and fall below 90% a staged approach should be considered Refer to possible risk factors Refer to the four functions and address any points as necessary Progress and strategies should be reviewed and tracked according to establishment procedures

20 Staged Intervention: Stage 2 When resources within the establishment are necessary move to Stage 2 Staff to continue to consider risk factors and the four functions of non attendance Direct communication and active planning (documentation) to take place with school, parent/carer/child outlining ASN and outcomes

21 Activity 5: Staged Intervention 2 Discuss one strategy on the activity sheet and carry out a Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Barriers analysis (SWOB)

22 Staged Intervention: Stage 2 Encourage parents/carers to take their child to school Be aware that staying at home can increase the childs anxiety Explore factors such as curricular demands, home situation Engage with family by whatever means necessary Explore possibility of restricted timetable & gradual integration Encourage use of basic coping strategies such as relaxation and positive self-talk Consultations through the JST could take place at this stage

23 Staged Intervention: Stage 3 and 4 Prior to moving to stage 3 and 4 consultation should take place at the JST Persistent non-attendance may require multi- agency input taking account of the evidence of school intervention Further assessment might be necessary to identify appropriate intervention

24 Multi-Agency Approach School should be the central focus for any coordinated level of input Importance of each agency having clear roles and responsibilities Importance of shared definition of persistent school non attendance

25 Assessment Assessment should ascertain if: Non attendance is the primary problem It is related to or subsumed by another difficulty such as anxiety, depression or a learning difficulty There are any other existing medical conditions

26 Assessment Assessment should be collaborative & may include: Structured interviews, exploring functions of behaviour Self report measures Parent/teacher questionnaires or checklists

27 Interventions No single intervention strategy has proven to be effective Intervention should be related to the identified function of non attendance Intervention should be related to the individuals needs A multi-stranded approach is key for success, working at levels of individual, class & school

28 Research evidence Function One: Direct input with child – feelings, thoughts, behaviour Desensitisation Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) In vivo flooding

29 Research evidence Function Two Similar to Function One Cognitive approaches may help to develop social skills Graded behavioural exposures CBT

30 Research Evidence Function Three Restructuring parents commands Ignoring simple inappropriate behaviours Establishing fixed routines and ensure children keep to these Punishments Reward systems Forced school attendance

31 Research Evidence Function Four Family Therapy Contracts Communication skills training Escorting to school & classes Peer refusal skills training

32 Activity 6: Next Steps Pupils must have access to some form of education. In order to become successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors, identify two aspects that may help to improve attendance and build capacity within your school.

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