Do's and don'ts of dealing with phobias
* Let school phobics visit the toilet as often as they want.
* Acknowledge the effort it takes for them to come to school.
* Inform all teachers about the problem and give them appropriate advice.
* Explain the problem to the class in a basic and matter-of-fact way so they become understanding and tolerant.
* Think carefully about what is said to school phobics because they will be hypersensitive to any criticism, real or perceived.
* Lower expectations for school phobics. For example, they may not want to join in with PE or class assemblies.
* Intervene immediately if there is any bullying.
* Try to anticipate the child's needs and smooth over any fears.
* Try to include the child in group activities, as social isolation will compound any problems.
* Educate school phobics in the school's special unit if the problem becomes severe.
* Send school phobics home if they complain of being ill without first verifying the symptoms. If you do, they may mistake their panic symptoms for genuine illness.
* Punish them because they do not conform to expected behaviour.
* Blame the school phobics or their parents or carers.
* Make a joke at the expense of the child, or say negative things about their behaviour.
* Ignore the child's hand if it is raised for the first time.
* Let pupils choose teams for games. If the child is unpopular, this could make them feel even worse about themselves.
* Force school phobics to take part in sports day or school trips, or make them feel bad for not taking part.