School avoidance and attendance problems present school systems and parents with particularly difficult challenges. The reasons why students are unable, or unwilling, to attend school routinely are varied, often requiring a variety of different assessments and intervention approaches. Although the goal is usually the same - to help students reintegrate back into their public school communities and progress academically, socially, and emotionally – the roads which lead to that goal may be quite different.
The Attendance Recovery Program uses a motivational enhancement approach which is non-therapeutic and focuses on enhancing attendance and academic success. It utilizes a specific methodology consisting of approximately 4-6 consultation sessions with an attendance recovery team. The team includes one educational and one clinical professional. The first step is an evaluation of the student’s overall motivation and change-readiness.
If the student is ready to engage the Attendance Recovery Program, the team will:
|School avoidance and non-attendance problems present school systems and parents with particularly difficult challenges.
- help the student clarify their own motivation and identify aspirations
- challenge the student with small goals that have a high probability of success, building their confidence and ability to set and achieve larger goals
- help the student overcome ambivalence and self-defeating habits
- help the student develop and consolidate a positive sense of self-efficacy and success
- assist parents/guardians in motivating, improving, and supporting their child’s school attendance
- help identify and overcome specific attendance/achievement obstacles (sleep problems, procrastination, perfectionism, somatic issues, etc.) using creative, practical solutions
- structure parent/home support system to maximize reinforcement for school attendance
- provide specific feedback to educational personnel about how to reintegrate and support the student
- help student/parents/school deal with minor setbacks, while learning from them, and keeping them from turning into “deal-breakers” (a return to non-attendance)
- provide school with recommendations for the future