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Educational Psychology Service - support for schools

The West Northamptonshire Educational Psychology Service is a team of educational psychologists all extensively trained in the psychology of learning, child and adolescent development, research, assessment and interventions.

The service also employs assistant educational psychologists who receive a comprehensive induction and training programme and work under the supervision of an educational psychologist.

Accessing support

For involvement in work with individual children and young people, schools should complete an Educational Psychology Service request support form after a discussion has taken place with your link educational psychologist or an assistant educational psychologist.

Consent form

All completed requests for support from the Educational Psychology Service will need a consent form uploaded.

Please complete the online consent form, print it off and ask the child or young person’s parent or carer to manually sign it, before scanning and uploading to the request for support.

We will not be able to process your request for support without a signed consent form, which will lead to delays in the child or young person being seen by an Educational Psychologist.

If you are not aware of the name of your link educational psychologist please contact Business Support by emailing [email protected]. They will refer you to your relevant Senior Educational Psychologist.

We offer:

  • a well-established and highly experienced service
  • a range of specialist and innovative areas in educational psychology
  • positive child development and learning through the application of psychology
  • current research and latest ideas that support evidenced based practice

All our educational psychologists are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council and receive supervision and continuous professional development within the service. The service strives for continuous improvement through evaluation and quality standards.

We work with early years settings, schools, parents and carers and children and young people themselves to help to overcome barriers to successful learning and well-being. In education settings, our educational psychologists can work with individuals, groups, senior managers and across the whole school.

Our assistant educational psychologists can provide focused intervention work at an individual level or in small groups to support children and young people with a range of social, emotional and mental health needs.

When you have commissioned the service, we will always negotiate the work with you and agree on how best to respond to your needs. We will seek to support, complement and extend the knowledge and skills of your staff. We can respond flexibly and at different levels.

A consultation approach helps those involved to work collaboratively to develop solutions. It involves bringing together those most concerned to explore, problem-solve and plan ways forward. A consultation meeting provides the framework for possible assessment and intervention planning.

Consultation is a collaborative process where the contribution of each participant has equal value. It is a process that is intended to help teachers be successful in managing their concerns and achieving jointly agreed outcomes that are practical and achievable in their context.

Consultation can apply at different levels of working and be used to develop solutions for school-based issues, class, group or individual issues for staff and students.

The essentials of a consultation approach involve:

  • all taking part to understand what consultation involves
  • an appropriate time and place are allocated for the consultation
  • all participant's views are valued
  • achievable outcomes or ‘hopes’ are established at the beginning
  • the focus is on shared problem solving
  • follow up is arranged to evaluate outcomes and plan further actions
  • students' views are sought and central to the discussion
  • parent and carer participation is promoted

Ideally, consultation is the starting point for assessment work so this has a clear purpose and is based on information that those who know the child best have shared. We offer a range of psychological assessments, from observation to specialised and focused/diagnostic assessments of general or specific skills.

We use psychological techniques and therapeutic approaches to elicit information about the child’s perceptions and their social, emotional and mental health.

We make sure that our assessment data is presented clearly, and we combine it with the views of the child, parents and teachers to give a psychological formulation of a child's current situation.

Your psychologist will help you to link this formulation to practical and effective intervention.

Working with your psychologist through consultation and assessment will identify interventions. These may be particular programmes, teaching approaches, environmental changes, or signposting to other services or resources.

Your link educational psychologist and/or assistant educational psychologist can provide individual, group and class-based interventions that use evidenced-based psychological approaches and techniques or models and support school staff to provide these (dependent on training).

Individual and group-level interventions

Examples of areas that interventions may be targeted towards include:

  • literacy and numeracy
  • learning difficulties and style
  • social awareness and skills
  • emotional well-being and regulation
  • emotionally-based school avoidance
  • self-esteem
  • relationships and friendships
  • attention and concentration
  • memory
  • sensory needs
  • motor development
  • therapeutic work
  • curriculum access

This may be at the individual child level, with groups of children or staff, or at the whole school level. Interventions may be discussed with the child, parent or carer, and school as part of the plan.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) group interventions

For those in Key Stage 1, the group intervention 'Zippy's Friends' provides straightforward materials and lesson plans to cover 24 weekly whole class sessions.

For older children and young people, we recommend the Activating Resilience and Coping (ARC) programme based on cognitive behavioural approaches. The service provides training in this structured intervention programme. Please refer to our training page for more details.

Whole school interventions

Targeted mental health in schools (TaMHS) is an example of a whole-school intervention - A suite of interventions, training and development support that promotes mental health and psychological well-being. TaMHS responses can be delivered to the individual child or young person and individual adult who works with a young person, right through to groups and whole-school interventions.

Schools can commission bespoke training or development work directly from the Educational Psychology Service (as part of their service level agreement) or attend centrally organised training.

View our training page for courses available.

For more information on training or a copy of the consultation leaflets please email us at [email protected].

Last updated 13 February 2024