OJPsych  Vol.5 No.2 , April 2015
The Risk and Protective Factors of School Absenteeism
Author(s) Rajeevan Rasasingham1,2
Absenteeism from school in children and adolescents is a problem that impacts the social, emotional and educational development of the children (Haarman, 2011). While absenteeism can be seen as a short-term condition, prolonged absenteeism during childhood may be a predictor of lasting issues that may persist into adulthood (King, Ollendick and Tonge, 1995), such as “school dropout, delinquency and occupational and relationship problems” (Kearney and Bensaheb, 2006), and economic deprivation and social, marital, occupational and psychiatric problems (Kearney and Graczyk, 2014). Early absenteeism has been associated with school dropout, further disconnecting the children from school based health programs and leading the children into economic deprivation, and marital, social and psychiatric problems in adulthood (Kogan, Luo, Murry and Brody, 2005). Furthermore, absenteeism may be an indication of “suicide attempt, perilous sexual behaviour, teenage pregnancy, violence, unintentional injury, driving under the influence of alcohol, and alcohol, marijuana, tobacco, and other substance abuse” (Kearney, 2008). The purpose of this article is to provide a review of the literature on protective and risk factors for school absenteeism in youths aged 5 to 18 years old, with focus on articles published after 2004. First, the definition of absenteeism will be discussed, followed by the prevalence and demographic of this phenomenon, the protective and risk factors of school absenteeism, and a review of intervention strategies.

Cite this paper
Rasasingham, R. (2015) The Risk and Protective Factors of School Absenteeism. Open Journal of Psychiatry, 5, 195-203. doi: 10.4236/ojpsych.2015.52023.
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