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What Is a School Psychologist?

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Presentation on theme: "What Is a School Psychologist?"— Presentation transcript:

1 What Is a School Psychologist?
A Guide for Teachers-in-Training Presented by [PLACE YOUR NAME HERE] [UNIVERSITY NAME] GENERAL SLIDE Ask the students if they know/knew the school psychologist for their school(s). Reinforce that there is a difference between a school psychologist and a school counselor. © 2006 National Association of School Psychologists, 4340 East West Highway, Suite 402, Bethesda, MD –

2 School Psychologists link mental health to learning and behavior to promote:
High academic achievement. Positive social skills and behavior. Healthy relationships and connectedness. Tolerance and respect for others. Competence, self-esteem, and resiliency. GENERAL SLIDE How have you done this in your job or training?

3 What Is the Role of a School Psychologist?
Assessment. Consultation. Prevention. Intervention. Staff, parent, and student education. Research and program development. Mental health care. Advocacy. Systems change. CORE SLIDE If pressed for time, skip the individual slides on these roles and just touch briefly on what the different areas listed here mean.

4 When Do Children Need a School Psychologist?
Learning difficulties. Behavioral concerns. Attention problems. Problems at home or with peers. Fears about war, violence, and terrorism. Depression and other mental health issues. Coping with crisis and trauma. Poverty, violence, or life changing events. Advocacy of their learning and mental health needs. GENERAL SLIDE Feel free to add other needs to the list Any specific examples from your school(s) or students? How have you handled Sept. 11th, war in Iraq, etc.?

5 When Should Teachers Collaborate With School Psychologists?
Tackling challenging academic or behavioral situations. Implementing effective individualized instruction. Providing evidence-based practices and interventions (in accordance with new laws) to address students’ learning needs. Evaluating student progress towards individual goals and state standards. Advocating for resources within the school and community for all students and their families.

6 Assessment School psychologists work with children, parents, and staff to help determine a child’s: Academic skills. Instructional level. Learning aptitudes, strengths, and weaknesses. Personality and emotional development. Social skills and behavioral concerns. Learning environment. School climate. Special education eligibility. GENERAL SLIDE Students may be interested in learning more about IQ testing. Talk about different kinds of testing; emphasize that assessment is more than just an IQ test Could discuss how assessment results are used for decision making.

7 Assessment continued …
School psychologists use: Observations. Interviews. Standardized measures. Curriculum-based measurement (CBM). Curriculum-based assessment (CBA).

8 School psychologists evaluate the origin and degree of a student’s strengths and weaknesses and monitor progress toward reaching academic goals.

9 Consultation: Child-Centered
School psychologists: Provide knowledge to help improve student learning and mental health outcomes. Implement and manage academic and behavioral interventions. Help teachers, parents, and other professionals understand a child’s development and learning. Meet or communicate with others involved with a child to determine the best way of managing or improving a particular concern. GENERAL SLIDE Examples from your experience?

10 Consultation: Consultee-Centered
School psychologists: Collaborate with teachers to help them identify classroom-based problems and implement data-based interventions. Support implementation of effective instruction and behavior management at the classroom level. Assist parents to develop skills to help their children succeed at home and in school. Collaborate with the principal and other school personnel to identify systemic concerns and promote systems-level change.

11 School psychologists and teachers can collaborate when presented with challenging students, classrooms, or situations.

12 Prevention School psychologists:
Implement programs to build positive connections between students and adults. Support early identification of potential academic skill deficits and/or learning difficulties. Design and implement programs for at-risk children. Foster tolerance and appreciation of diversity. Create safe, supportive learning environments. GENERAL SLIDE Note that “adults” includes parents, teachers, and administrators. Discuss any prevention programs or measures you have utilized. Have you been involved in making your school(s) safer in recent months?

13 Teachers know their students best
Teachers know their students best. Teachers can help school psychologists with prevention efforts by identifying students at-risk and systemic concerns in the classroom, school, and community.

14 Intervention School psychologists:
Work directly with children, teachers, administrators, and families. Develop individualized, classroom, and school-wide interventions for learning and adjustment. Design and implement crisis response plans. Provide counseling, social skills training, and academic and behavioral interventions. Develop strategies for modifying instruction to optimize student progress. GENERAL SLIDE Discuss your intervention experience.

15 School psychologists can help teachers select, implement, and evaluate interventions that work for children with diverse needs.

16 Education School psychologists provide teachers and parents training in: Teaching and learning strategies and interventions. Parenting and disciplining techniques. Classroom and behavior management techniques. Working with exceptional students. Strategies to address substance abuse, risky behaviors, or mental illnesses that affect students. Crisis prevention and response. GENERAL SLIDE Discuss any in-service days, workshops, or presentations you have done for teachers, administrators, and/or parents.

17 School psychologists teach students, teachers, parents, and other professionals problem-solving strategies to address issues related to academic, behavioral, and psychological problems.

18 Research and Program Development
School psychologists: Recommend and implement evidence-based programs and strategies. Conduct school-based research to inform practice. Evaluate effectiveness of programs and interventions independently and as part of a school-based evaluation team. Contribute to school-wide reform and restructuring. GENERAL SLIDE How has research played a role in your practice? Discuss any relevant professional development experiences.

19 School psychologists can help teachers, parents, and other professionals use data-based decision making to improve student and systemic outcomes.

20 Mental Health Services
School psychologists: Deliver school-based mental health services such as group, individual, and crisis counseling. Coordinate with community resources and health care providers to provide students with complete, seamless services. Partner with parents and teachers to create healthy school environments. Promote mental health in the school setting. GENERAL SLIDE Does your school provide comprehensive mental health services? How have you collaborated with community agencies?

21 School psychologists can help teachers understand and accommodate the unique needs of students with mental health problems in the classroom.

22 Advocacy NASP and state professional associations are dedicated to advocacy. School psychologists encourage and sponsor: Appropriate educational placements. Education reform. Legislative involvement. Community services and programs. Funding for adequate resources. Employment of highly qualified school personnel. GENERAL SLIDE Discuss how you advocate for your students’ educational placements If time, discuss IDEA/reauthorization and its impact on your practice. Explain that NASP has staff dedicated to advocacy in Washington, and has network of affiliates throughout the country State associations work on legislative issues as well

23 School psychologists and teachers can work together to advocate for the needs of students at the school, local, state, and national level.

24 Some More Specific Examples …
School psychologists work with diverse populations and diverse needs!

25 Family Problems The teacher noticed that Carla, an able student, had stopped participating in class discussions and had difficulty paying attention. He asked the school psychologist to explore why Carla’s behavior had changed so much. After discovering that her parents were divorcing, the school psychologist provided counseling for Carla and gave her parents and teacher suggestions to help her during this difficult time. Carla’s behavior and self-esteem improved, and she felt more secure about her relationship with her parents.

26 School psychologists can be trusted to help with delicate personal and family situations that interfere with schooling.

27 Reading Problems Tommy’s parents were concerned about his difficulty in reading. They feared that he would fall behind and lose confidence in himself. In school the teacher noticed that Tommy understood what was presented in verbal form but that he needed help from his classmates to do written work. After observing Tommy and gathering information about his reading and writing skills, the school psychologist collaborated with his parents and teachers to develop an intervention to improve his reading and writing. The plan worked and both Tommy’s reading and his self-esteem improved.

28 School psychologists can help prevent future problems when they intervene with learning problems early on.

29 A Potential Dropout David was a high school student who often skipped class. He had very poor behavior and had been suspended from school on various occasions for fighting. After establishing a relationship with David, the school psychologist taught him simple techniques to relax and to control his aggressive behavior. David’s mother and his teacher worked together on a plan designed with the school psychologist to establish limits and to improve communication.

30 School psychologists recognize that changes in the school environment and at home can improve the quality of life for children and their families.

31 For More Information, Contact:
National Association of School Psychologists (301) CORE SLIDE Distribute NASP brochures, call office if you would like to get brochures ahead of time

32 QUESTIONS? CORE SLIDE If students do not ask questions and you have extra time, use the following FAQs

33 Staff Contributors Summer 2003 Kathy Cowan Meaghan Curran Ted Feinberg
Special thanks to the 2005–06 NASP Student Leader Outreach Committee for initiating this outreach effort, and to committee member Stacy Bjorkman for her assistance with this presentation. Staff Contributors Summer 2003 Kathy Cowan Meaghan Curran Ted Feinberg Mary Beth Klotz Linda Morgan Libby Nealis Staff Contributors Winter 2006 Kathy Cowan Ted Feinberg Linda Morgan Mary Beth Klotz Myriah Rosengarten Arlene Silva © 2006 National Association of School Psychologists, 4340 East West Highway, Suite 402, Bethesda, MD –

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