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Anira asks: My 11-yr old son shows no interest in schoolwork despite threats by his dad of changing schools for the 7th or 8th time in his life. It's painful knowing that this constant changing is affecting his stability and self-image but my son shows no signs of wanting to change, despite the threats. God help me, I don't want his little sister to become disturbed like her brother. She's coping quite well in school. I don't want change of schools to uproot her and upset both my kids. 

Tracy-Lee Sydney-Smith, the Centre Director for Kip McGrath Umhlanga is passionate about giving children the opportunity to reach their true potential academically. After working locally Tracy taught in England where she gained valuable experience and completed her Honours Degree in Education. Tracy believes that every child can be helped to achieve with continuous motivation and a healthy boost of his or her self confidence. She says:

There is always a cause to every problem, and once you discover that - you can work on solving it. There must be something that is causing your son to not enjoy school work... You need to find out what that is! 

He should have a full medical check up. His diet needs to be checked. It is anything physiological? Have there been any psychological upsets in his life? [See a child psychologist.] Does he have a learning disability?  Or is he behind academically because of a psychological or physiological problem?

The best combination is to go to your GP or pediatrician for a medical checkup and then an Educational Psychologist for a full report. 

Once the cause is discovered then you can look at solving the problem.  Remember that children are complex and there are many things that they pick up on and it affects their lives profoundly.  Please do not threaten - you have to use positive reinforcement to get a child to change his/her attitude.

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