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My daughter is devastated ...

Published:Tuesday | April 17, 2012 | 12:00 AM

My 11-year-old cheated on a spelling test. She was not sure if a letter should have been 'z' or 's'. She asked the girls beside her to pronounce the word for her. The teacher saw, belted out that she was cheating and should leave the class. My daughter is devastated and does not want to go back to school. What do I do?

You need to go to the school and listen to both sides of the story - the teacher's and your daughter's. If you are not satisfied with the steps that are taken after this, then you should speak with the principal.

I believe art should be taught at all levels in schools. The school my son goes to only has art on Fridays for fun. At age 10, I think they could even be entering art competitions. How can a school add this as an official class to its school day.

Many schools have art as a formal part of the school day and many enter national competitions. You should speak with the principal and see how you can help to develop an art programme at the school. I am sure it will be great for students and staff.

My child is now in group therapy for 14-year-olds with behaviour problems. How does group therapy work? Will it help him?

Group counselling was developed to have persons with similar problems meet and discuss how they can learn to be better persons. The counsellor will set rules that will guide the structure for how the group will operate. Goals will be set for each person and the group. The teen will be reminded that what they say is confidential and must be kept in the group. Ensure you meet the counsellor and be aware of activities you may be asked to participate in.

Orlean Brown-Earle, PhD, is a child psychologist and family therapist. Dr Brown-Earle works with children with learning and behaviour problems throughout the island and in the Caribbean. Email questions to helpline@gleanerjm.com or send to Ask the Doc, c/o The Gleaner Company, 7 North Street, Kingston. Responses to concerns are to be considered as general, as cases shared with psychologists privately would be queried more deeply. Pray always!