Just reading this makes me sad and anxious. I can totally imagine this state of being averse to school and not wanting to get out of bed. I had one experience like this when I was a second grader in a school in an Alamosa, Colorado, school when I was being treated in a prejudicial way for being Mexican by another student. My mother, of course, had to intervene lest I become a second-grade dropout. Thankfully, through her intervention and with help from my teacher, Ms. Hitchcock, I was able to overcome this and survive the second grade.
Although for me at the time, it was a matter of extreme importance, I realize that the whole experience could have been much worse—as it is for many children today.
I agree. Anxiety-based, "School Refusal" merits therapeutic, as opposed to disciplinary, treatment. Just imagining what young people have to go through these days with all the pressures, expectations, and stress-inducing news directed their way on a daily basis makes me wonder why the percentage of kids experiencing what health professionals are calling, "school refusal," isn't higher. But yes, that any child should experience this is one child too many.
My only hesitation is solely pathologizing this and not considering the oftentimes invisible, even if ferocious, policy structures and practices that inadvertently promote School Refusal.
I just re-read a blog post from 2015 of a 2011 Teachers College Record piece on the Stalinization of American Public Education. How alienating the Stalinist playbook—which is ours today in American public education:
Ubiquitous in American schools, outcomes-based education seems more suited to the goals of communism than the ideals of democracy. “The activity of the [Stalinist] system of education was not oriented toward encouraging creativity, and the development of the personality but rather toward universal leveling, averaging, and the fulfillment of the social mandate” (Borisenkov, 2007, p. 7).