Parents Should Consider The Effect On Their Child Frequently Changing Schools

The results of further research suggest that children who frequently move between schools are more likely to show psychotic symptoms when they are teenagers.  Even moving around schools as a young child could have a detrimental effect. The study found that “school mobility” is an important risk factor for psychopathology.  The study was published in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry examined 4000 children aged 18 years of age.

The research found that children who had moved schools repeatedly had over a two-fold increased odds of developing at least one psychotic symptom by 18 years of age as compared to those children who experienced fewer school moves.  The psychotic symptoms suffered by the children were hallucinations, delusions, confused or disturbed thoughts and these were considered to be a precursor to psychotic disorders.

The study findings suggest that school moves in particular are harmful and may increase feelings of isolation and stress in those who have already experienced social exclusion,” said lead author Professor Swaran Singh.  “School moves may also indicate other underlying problems, such as family breakdown, which may further contribute to an increased risk of psychosis.”  Co-author Dr Catherine Winsper said “Although school mobility appears to be a strong risk factor for psychotic symptoms in early and late adolescence, the majority of children who experience repeated school moves will not develop psychosis.”

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