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Educators Employ Strategies to Help Kids With Anxiety Return to School

Mental health professionals and educators say what used to be considered run-of-the-mill truancy could actually be something else. Some cases of chronic absenteeism are now being called “school refusal,” which is triggered by anxiety, depression, family crises and other traumatic events. It can lead to weeks or even months of missed school days.

Some schools are employing new strategies. The Threshold Program at the Maine Academy of Natural Sciences, which is a public charter high school, sends teachers into the homes of students. The school is four weeks into the program. Twenty-one students are enrolled, 18 of whom are diagnosed or identify as having some type of social anxiety.