NASP Congratulates President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Harris

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Bethesda, MD—On this first day of National School Psychology Week (NSPW), NASP congratulates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on their election as President-Elect and Vice President-Elect of the United States of America. President-Elect Biden has committed to strengthening public education as a critical national resource, with an emphasis on ensuring equity and supporting educators’ capacity to meet the learning and mental health needs of all students.

In particular, NASP appreciates President-Elect Biden’s call to increase the number of school psychologists in our schools. School psychologists are uniquely qualified members of school teams that support teachers’ ability to teach and children’s ability to learn. They provide direct educational, behavioral, and mental health services for children and youth, as well as work with families, school administrators, educators, and other professionals to create equitable, supportive learning environments for all students.

NASP’s recommended ratio is 1 school psychologist for every 500 students served, and the current average national ratio is 1 to 1,381, an unacceptable disparity in need versus capacity. “As this past year has laid bare in many respects, schools play a critical role, not just in the lives of our children, but in the functioning of the country as a whole,” says NASP President Wendy Price. “Central to this responsibility is the capacity to support students’ mental and behavioral health and unique learning needs. School psychologists are essential to this work.”

President-Elect Biden said in his speech last Saturday, “I’ve always believed we can define America in one word: possibilities.” NASP agrees. In fact, the theme this year for NSPW is the “Power of Possibility.” School psychologists work every day to help students, families, and schools find and realize their possibilities even when faced with extraordinary challenges. NASP looks forward to working with the incoming Biden Administration to implement strategies to address the shortages in our field while at the same time working to advance policies and practices that ensure equity in education and social justice for our children and youth.