Original Research

Observing a decline in general school functioning associated with depressive disorders in children - a potential role for teachers?

Deborah van der Westhuizen, Christa Kruger
South African Journal of Psychiatry | Vol 11, No 3 | a111 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajpsychiatry.v11i3.111 | © 2005 Deborah van der Westhuizen, Christa Kruger | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 07 August 2008 | Published: 01 December 2005

About the author(s)

Deborah van der Westhuizen, Department of Psychiatry, Weskoppies Hospital, Pretoria, South Africa
Christa Kruger, Department of Psychiatry, Weskoppies Hospital, Pretoria, South Africa

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Abstract

Childhood depressive disorders frequently go unrecognised. This study explores how a decline in school functioning (often associated with depressive disorders) can be identified by teachers using an 8-item questionnaire. Trained teachers recognised changes in the school functioning of 165 children aged 10 - 14 years, which were associated with possible depressive disorders (‘screen positives’) as identified by the Depression Self-Rating Scale (DSRS).

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