My child was always anxious, but after being mauled by a dog in 4th grade, he developed school refusal. I was allowed to accompany him into the school and to let him get comfortable and then leave. This worked, and things were getting better, but other kids started teasing him. A teacher (not his own) began to make fun of him and tell him to “man up”. Then neither of us could handle such an unsupportive environment. We moved him to a smaller school for kids with learning differences for that year and the next grade. He entered middle school back in the public system. This school was a small start-up for boys only. The size was a positive but more so were the teachers and administration. In 8th grade, he was diagnosed with dysgraphia. In 9th, with ADHD inattentive. The psychiatrist believes his learning differences were the catalyst for his anxiety back in pre-kindergarten. School was hard for him. Now, with proper diagnosis, counselling, and medications, he is doing unbelievably well. He is in his final year (same school), has an A average, is president of his student council, and is the athletic manager. So to the mum who is struggling – your child can overcome this. I cried every day when I left the school in that awful 4th grade. I questioned our decision to put him back in the public system. I now have that sinking feeling when he does something new – remembering back to our disaster days. Time, patience, great counsellors made the difference. And this kid is one empathetic boy.