Volume 29, Issue 4 (2000)
School Psychologists as Health-Care Providers in the 21st Century: Conceptual Framework, Professional Identity, and Professional Practice
Bonnie K. Nastasi
Abstract: As we enter the 21st Century, school psychologists are in a key position to participate in comprehensive health care of children and adolescents. For the most part,however, school psychologists have persisted in the conduct of traditional psycho educational assessment as a primary function. Presented here is a model for thinking about school psychology in which practitioners assume an active role in addressing the health and mental health needs of children and adolescents. Comprehensive health care is defined as an integrated system of culture-specific services ranging from prevention to treatment directed toward health, mental health, and related needs of students and their families. The model is rooted in developmental-ecological theory and action research methodology and embodies a participatory approach in which caregivers, stakeholders, and professionals work together to design, implement, and evaluate interventions. Realizing a role in health care requires changes in the conceptual framework and professional identity characterizing school psychology.
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