Parent Asks:
How should parents respond when children say they don't like school?

Educator Answers:
When you hear "I don't like school" talk with your kids to find out what is going on. Start asking questions and listening to the child, to find where the problem lies. Often it is linked to falling behind in schoolwork, not being prepared for a test, a social issue with a classmate or child on the bus or playground.

It is normal for kids to make these kinds of remarks, once in awhile. After all, not all days are perfect and school can include frustrations and disappointments. It is healthy for kids to express their feelings and know that adults will listen in a non-judgmental way.

When you start to hear "I don't like school!" on a chronic basis, additional investigation and action is needed. Talk about the problems and consider potential remedies. Talk with the teacher and administrator, if necessary. Work together as a team to resolve the problems before they grow. Point out positive aspects in daily discussions to help your child see the balance, while taking action to resolve problems.