students saying goodbye to school

Anxiety, aggression and unjustified absences: what is behind the increase in early school leaving in Italy and among our children?

Distance learning e depersonalization of the student, pandemic and anxiety, youthful stress and lack of a positive vision (or simply a vision) of the future: these are among the many reasons why it is not surprising that the mental health of the young is at risk. Obviously, this category of problems also affects the effectiveness of the school: stress and the lack of a safe place and of reference figures for the children create school dropoutwhich in turn fuels this vicious circle.

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The cases reported by la Repubblica

Polly (invented name), she felt “unworthy” of the school, due to a letter of rejection, the straw that broke the camel of the young girl’s scholastic insufficiencies and disappointments, in sixth grade. “The teacher. she favored the other team, I insulted her, I don’t know what came over me ”, says a second girl from a professional institute, while Beatrice (another invented name) could not handle the atmosphere in the classroom, she had to leave earlier . She was out of breath, she explained to a Save The Children educator who helped her with online tutoring. These are just some of the stories that have emerged in recent months and reported by the newspaper la Repubblica, concerning borderline youngwhich begin with small absences and end up increasing the numbers of the early school leaving in Italy.

School dropout and unjustified absences

One of the main problems concerns the absences: very many failures at home of the lack of presence in the courtroom, which involved almost 74,000 kids in June of this year and which represents a trend which, given the updated data regarding the first quarter of the year 2022/2023, does not seem willing to decline. These rejected ghosts are considered “not subject to scrutiny“: according to a spokesman for the commission on early school leaving of the Authority for childhood and adolescence, Arduino Salatin: “That absence is a predictor of dispersion is beyond dispute”. Early school leaving concerns, in our country, 12.7% of studentswhether they are children or adolescents, often in situations of socio-economic disadvantage or within fragile households. For them, dispersion (implicit or explicit) is particularly harmful and transfers them into the ranks of the child labor.

Italian students “at the limit” of today

Paola Bortoletto, representative of the National Association of School Managers (Andis) defined this category of boys as “limit teenagers: it is urgent to find ways to make them feel good at school”. According to Charles Bragaon the other hand, who follows the Group on social withdrawal of students in the Emilia-Romagna region, “there is a widespread fragility which is not only due to Covid, but to a cultural change with respect to the self-image in adolescence, to peer performance anxiety”. But not only that: it is in fact, in general, the mental health of the youngest to be tremendously at risk. 16.6% of Italians between the ages of 10 and 19, therefore around 956 thousand individuals, suffered from mental disorders in 2019, according to a Unicef ​​report. Furthermore, the National Adolescence Observatory tells us, during 2021 the 35% of adolescents have had direct experience with symptoms of depression or with real depressive episodes.

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The effects of the pandemic are being felt

“The pandemic has crushed family needs to the bottom now anxiety is getting to the end of the day and the school careers of the children take a back seat”, he said Andrea Mornirolimember of the Inequality Forum. Alfonsina Cavallucci, on the other hand, principal of the Kandinsky professional institute, on the outskirts of southern Milan, says: “We have been struggling with dispersion since well before Covid, we lose 60-70 students every year. What is new instead are the young people who come, but it is as if they weren’t there: closed in on themselves, disinterested, with no more coordinates to stay with companions”. To help professors, who are increasingly struggling to capture the attention of students aggressivei try Volunteers for education of the Save The Children association.

Graduated in Arts, Entertainment, Cultural Events at the IULM University of Milan, she is pursuing a Masters in Storytelling Arts. She is passionate about storytelling in all its forms, from narrative to…

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About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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