From day hospital back to school: identifying conditions for successful school reintegration

The transition from child and adolescent psychiatric day hospitals back to regular school settings is a challenging transition for patients, their parents, and teachers. Practical empirical knowledge reveals that despite close cooperation between clinical therapists, parents, and schools realized in many day hospitals, school reintegration places a strong burden on all parties involved with potentially unfavorable outcomes for children in the classroom and with regard to their general mental health status. In many cases, teachers express feelings of deficient self-efficacy regarding their capability to meet individual needs of a child after discharge in the classroom context. It seems likely that such concerns negatively influence both teacher-child interactions as well as parental perceptions, and, indirectly, parent-child interactions, leading to a setback to improvements achieved during day hospital stays. However, until today, only few and solely qualitative research has been carried out to systematically investigate such factors fostering successful school reintegration after discharge and a potential reciprocity between children’s, parents’, and teachers’ experiences, perceptions, and interactions during school reintegration. Therefore, the project aims to

(1.) describe psychosocial and academic functioning in children during the transition process from day hospital to their school as well as to analyze (2.) same- and (3.) across-person associations of psychosocial and academic functioning as rated by children, parents, and teachers in an intensive measurement burst starting two weeks before discharge and ending eight weeks after discharge (i.e., 50 consecutive school days in total).

Project Team


LEAD Graduate School & Research Network