School Psychologists are professionals trained to work with preschoolers, children, and adolescents, and their teachers and families. They work with all school personnel to help make education for students a positive and rewarding experience. The training requirements to become a school psychologist are a minimum of 60 graduate semester hours plus a year-long internship. Training emphasizes preparation in mental health, child development, learning and motivation. To work as a school psychologist, one must be certified and/or licensed by the state in which services are provided. School psychologists also may be nationally certified by the National School Psychology Certification Board (NSPCB).
WHAT DO SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS DO?
- collaborate with teachers, parents, and school personnel about learning, social and behavior problems
- help others better understand child development and its relationship to learning and behavior
- strengthen working relationships between educators, parents, and the community
- working closely with parents and teachers, school psychologists use a wide variety of techniques, to evaluate:
- academic skills
- learning aptitudes
- social skills
- personality and emotional development
- eligibility for special service programs
- career and vocational goals
- provide educational programs on classroom management strategies
- parenting skills
- substance abuse
- working with students with disabilities or gifted talented students
- teaching and learning strategies
- work directly with students or families
- help solve conflicts and problems related to learning and adjustment
- provide counseling, social skills training, behavior management, and other interventions
- help families deal with difficult crises such as separation or loss
- evaluate the effectiveness of academic programs, behavior management procedures, and other services provided in the school setting
- conduct research to generate new knowledge to improve learning and behavior
WHERE DO SCHOOL PSYCHS WORK?
The National Association of School Psychologists represents over 20,000 school psychologists and related professionals who are dedicated to serving the education and mental health needs of children, adolescents, young adults and families.
Growing up isn't easy…
All children and adolescence face problems from time to time. They may:
- fear starting preschool, kindergarten or first grade
- feel unsure about themselves
- manage their time poorly
- fall behind in school work
- be upset about family events such as divorce or death
- feel depressed
- lack self-discipline
- experiment with drugs and alcohol
- think about suicide
- find school boring
- lack study skills
- worry about their sexuality
- face a tough decision about college or work
- consider dropping out of school
- have feelings they don't understand
- lack awareness of their aptitudes and abilities
or…they may simply need a helping hand over a rough spot.
School Psychologists help teachers, parents, and students:
Understand, prevent, and solve problems and promote positive mental health and effective environments for learning.