Publication details

Hidden Heroes - Children Of Parents With Severe Mental Illness In School Practice



Year of publication 2022
Type Article in Proceedings
Conference ICEEPSY 2022 : Education and Educational Psychology
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Keywords Prevalence; school achievement; mentally ill parent; school intervention; COPMI
Description The consequences of hospitalisation of a parent with severe mental illness (SMI) may negatively affect a child's school performance in a wide range of areas. We have conducted a research study identifying the prevalence of parenthood among hospitalised patients with SMI and put it into context with the impact of this phenomenon on school achievement. Our study aimed to identify the number of students who may be at risk of school failure and to create recommendations for school psychologists based on previously published studies. We have analysed medical records of patients hospitalised in one specific hospital for SMI between 2017-2020. Following this, we reviewed studies focusing on the school functioning in students with parents with mental illness. Results show that a third of hospitalised SMI patients (n=730) are parents with 1376 offspring. Of these, 43.2% are under 18 years of age, most of whom attend primary school. Based on the findings of school functioning-focused studies, we can conclude that many children are at risk of psychological difficulties and adaptation problems that may significantly affect school performance due to problems connected with parents' SMI. The aim of this article is to raise awareness and understanding about this specific group of students to provide readers (e.g. school psychologists) with practical recommendations based on the current state of professional knowledge.
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