The failure to adapt to boarding house environment at the senior high schools (SHSs) could lead to student depression, a clinical psychologist has cautioned.

Professor Samuel Oheneba Dornyo said junior high school (JHS) graduates who are leaving home for boarding school could suffer “depressive reaction” as a result of the change in environment.

The psycho-analyst told Kojo Yankson on the Joy FM’s Super Morning Show Wednesday, poor handling of the issue could affect the learning of students.

“That is why it is good that sometimes before students go to a boarding house they have to be conditioned,” Professor Dornyo said.

The 2017/2018 academic year at the secondary level started on Monday with the enrollment of first-year students.

Adjartey and Maureen

Aside the rolling out of government’s free SHS education policy, which makes secondary education free, some fresh students who are leaving home for the first time are likely to detest the boarding house environment.

Professor Dornyo explained the fear of leaving the comfort of home to a “regimented” house might be unnerving for some students.

“Change can be very dramatic for a lot of people,” the counsellor said, adding the regulated way of doing things in schools might not help some students.

He believes parents could help to lessen the problem if they learn to simulate the boarding house environment in their homes.

Adjartey and Maureen

“The house must be turned into a boarding house,” he said, adding parents must take the pain to study how things are done in schools.

But the experience of a former student of Achimota School, Maureen Kyere was two sided

“I was happy and nervous,” she recounted, adding her seniors made her feel at home.

Leaving home for a boarding house sometimes comes with heartaches. “My grandmother cried when we were leaving the house,” Maureen said.

But the handling of such situations by school authorities is key to the survival of students, an educationist has said.

Assistant Senior Housemaster at Ghanata SHS, Charles Adjartey Tetteh said teachers have to counsel parents and their wards together about what to anticipate in the school.