Preserving and Promoting School Psychological Services
In This Section
A set of tools designed to help individuals and state associations plan their grassroots advocacy efforts directed at preserving and promoting school psychology and school psychological services.
How to Use the NASP Advocacy Roadmap
The NASP Advocacy Roadmap contains a variety of materials and resources for developing a local- or state-level response to potential threats to school psychology. As our country and local communities face growing concerns about the economy, our members have reported increased stress related to layoffs and hiring freezes that impact workload, job satisfaction, and job security. This Roadmap is designed to assist individuals and state associations address immediate threats and help them proactively advocate for the preservation and promotion of school psychological services during these tough economic times. This Roadmap is designed to support the work of state associations and is not meant to be exhaustive in its content. We hope that those who have engaged in advocacy activities that have proven to be successful will consider sharing their ideas and experiences with association leaders for possible inclusion in this Roadmap. You are encouraged to review all of the materials posted at this site and think creatively and broadly about how they may be most effectively adapted for your use. Ultimately, you and your colleagues will need to craft your own unique response based upon the issues and policies in your local school districts and states.
Table of Contents
Exhibit A: Brief Overview of the Current Issues Related to Advocacy for School Psychology
This document provides a quick overview of the current issues that are impacting school psychologists and explains why there is a critical need for all school psychologists to actively advocate for the profession.
Exhibit B: Assessing the Current Climate and Needs: Key Questions in Assessing Job Risk, Threats, Needs, and Opportunities
This document is designed to inform your advocacy efforts by helping you assess the current climate and needs regarding school psychology. It provides questions that help guide you through considerations of the roles of school psychologists, how they are perceived and valued, and how they function in relation to school system leadership. Through careful review of these questions, you can begin to understand where it would be most advantageous to focus your advocacy efforts.
Exhibit C: Advocacy “To Do” List
This list provides a sequence for action and quick electronic links to the resources contained in this Roadmap.
Exhibit D: NASP Key Messages
As you actively engage in advocacy for the purpose of preserving and promoting school psychology, it is critical that you are familiar with the NASP key messages associated with this area of advocacy. This section links you to a Communiqué article with an overview of these messages and a document that summarizes the messages.
Exhibit E: School Psychologists in Crisis: Taking Action in Response to Potential Cuts in School Psychology Positions in Your Local School District
This section provides specific suggestions for how school psychologists can respond to announcements that school psychology positions are being cut. Specific tips, tools, and an example of a successful advocacy response are detailed. Contents include:
- Sample Memo to School Boards
- CQ Article: Saving School Psychology in a Time of Fiscal Crisis
- Miami Herald Article
- Memo to the Miami-Dade County School Board
Exhibit F: Summary of School Psychology Promotion Resources
This section includes the following resources:
- NASP Convention Session: Communication Matters—Promoting and Preserving School Psychology in Tough Economic Times
- School Psychology PR Letter written by Michigan Association of School Psychologists
The following resources can be individualized for your school district or can serve as an example in developing your resources.
- School Psychology: A Career That Makes a Difference (Powerpoint)
- School Psychologists: Helping Children Achieve Their Best. (Powerpoint)
- Communication and Advocacy Across Settings: Promoting the Role of School Psychology (Powerpoint)
- The Role of the School Psychologist in the RTI Process (handout)
- Bully Prevention: What Schools and Parents Can Do (handout)
- Grade Retention (handout)
- School Refusal (handout)
This is a handout produced by the Center for Mental Health in the Schools at UCLA.
Exhibit H: Legislative Advocacy for School Psychologists
It is not always possible to know when the storm will hit and when you might need to protect yourself and your profession from potential threats. Thus, introducing legislation favorable to school psychology when the waters are calm is a great way to position the profession to weather any subsequent harmful legislation. The favorable legislation can be referred to in your defense. This section includes two resolutions (adopted by state legislatures) that feature the benefits of school psychological services:
Exhibit I: Tips for Being an Effective Advocate
This section contains tips on how to engage in effective public policy advocacy through grassroots initiatives. It includes the following:
- Becoming an Effective Advocate: How to Educate Lawmakers A bout School Psychological Services
- Frequently Asked Questions About Working With a Lobbyist
- Tips for Working With the Media (coming soon)
Exhibit J: Action Planning Template
This template is designed to help you create an effective advocacy plan for preserving and promoting school psychology. It will assist you and your colleagues in identifying specific goals, associated activities, timelines, responsible personnel, needed resources, and anticipated outcomes.
Exhibit K: Assistance Available to States
This document summarizes resources, materials, and leader and staff contacts for those engaged in school psychology advocacy campaigns.
Exhibit L: Advocating for School Psychology: Lessons Learned
As you engage in active advocacy on behalf of school psychology, you are bound to learn something along the way. This document provides a template for you to tell your story so that others may learn from your experiences. We hope that you will take the time to provide feedback so that the road will be more predictable and the journey even more rewarding for the next school psychologist committed enough to travel it.