From Tracy / My daughter's School Refusal/Phobia

My daughter Emma has been suffering with school refusal since 3rd grade. It started about a year after her father's death. It became very bad in 4th grade. I tried to talk with the school, but most of it fell on deaf ears. She was physically carried into school. She would huddle in the corner of the coat room while they threatened her saying, they would call the police and telling her she was going to jail. She became increasingly despondent and stopped eating for fear she might choke and die. I was called to school one day and found her huddled under a desk essentially mute. At the time I was listening to the "experts." I think they did more harm than good. She went to a partial hospitalization for two weeks. During this time she had been under the care of a therapist and psychiatrist. She had a partial neuropsych eval. Dx. With PTSD and severe anxiety. Finally the school began to work with me when Emma was discharged from the hospital. She was placed on a 504 plan. Emma got through the 5th grade better with accommodations in place. We proceeded to middle school. Unfortunately, There was no plan, and the 504 did not follow her. At that time I didn't think Emma or myself could go through another battle trying to make the school work with us. I pulled her out ( at my own expense using retirement money) and placed her in a small catholic school. The smaller class size was a big help, but she still struggled. That brings us,now, to 7th grade. She has fallen apart again facing another hospitalization. I have contacted the public school to inquire about education options for her I have a meeting schedule. The catholic school has offered to help, but they really cannot provide the accommodations she needs. She wants to go to school, but when we get there she gets panicky and can't get in the door. I really feel if she could get into a therapeutic school setting she might be able to overcome this. I happened across your site. There is very little help/information on how to deal with this. There is plenty written about what school refusal is but very little about dealing with it. If anyone has any help/advise to offer I would greatly appreciated it. Thank you for reading. Tracy