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Advocacy in Action at Convention 2019
Last week, NASP held its 50th annual convention in Atlanta, Georgia! Check out some of the advocacy highlights below.
Advocacy in Action
Our amazing school psychology advocates stepped it up at convention this year! By the end of the week, 967 individual advocates sent 4,655 letters - nearly double the 2018 convention total! - on the following topics:
- "Support Comprehensive School Safety Policy and Practice"
- "Remedy the Shortages in School Psychology"
- "Support Policies that Promote Equity in Education"
- "Increase Access to Comprehensive School Mental and Behavioral Health Services"
The issues we advocate for are fully detailed in our 116th Congress Public Policy and Legislative Platform, which represents the overarching policy goals and recommendations that support the mission and vision of NASP.
At least one advocate sent a letter from 49 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. That means that nearly every single Senator was contacted about one of the policy issues that school psychologists advocate for, and more than ¾ of the members in the House of Representatives were contacted as well (352 districts).
Our Advocacy Action Center is loaded with advocacy opportunities year-round, where participants can edit template letters to send to their representatives in Congress. This service is also available for states to load their own template letters!
We also honored the GPR award winners, who were especially exceptional last year in their advocacy efforts. These award recipients are tireless advocates for children and families, and the contributions they have made to the profession of school psychology will have a long-lasting, positive impact and are sincerely appreciated. The award recipients were:
Special Friends of Children
- -Congresswoman Katherine Clark
- -New York State School Boards Association
- -Dr. Luann Purcell
- -Anthony Adamowski
- -Ed Clarke
Certificate of Appreciation
- -Elizabeth Niemiec
There are many ways that you can stay connected with NASP's advocacy efforts this year at the federal, state and local level. Check out some specific actions you can take right now, below:
Attend the Public Policy Institute. If you are interested in further developing your advocacy skills, consider attending NASP and George Washington University's Public Policy Institute (PPI) held in Washington, DC. The PPI will span over 5 days from July 15-July 19, with 2-day, 3-day, and 5-day options for attendance. You can earn NASP and APA-approved CPD credit as well as graduate semester credit. This year's theme is Building Capacity for Safe and Successful Schools: Policy Directions for the Nation. Registration will open soon!
Follow us on social media and join our rapid response team list. Whenever we organize action on a piece of legislation, we will typically first post about it on social media. Be sure to follow @nasponline on Twitter and Instagram to stay up-to-date, and like us on Facebook. Further, by joining our rapid response team list, you'll receive a limited number of emails asking you to amplify NASP's responses to various current events. Your engagement on these issues is vital to our success and we promise to keep our asks to a minimum. Join now by simply filling out this form.
Bookmark our PolicyMatters Blog and Advocacy Action Center. NASP's advocacy team maintains the PolicyMatters blog with consistent, up-to-date information on its advocacy efforts, and the Advocacy Action Center will always have opportunities for action uploaded. Be sure to bookmark both websites, check them regularly, and consider contributing a blog post (contact Caden at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested).
Get involved in state advocacy. Sometimes, the biggest difference you can make is at the state or local level! Many states are engaging in bold and exciting legislative initiatives in their 2019 legislative sessions. Ask your state association about opportunities to participate in local advocacy. Connect with your state association here.
Join our advocacy and public policy interest group. Continue the conversation in our NASP member exchange Advocacy and Public Policy interest group. Share policy happenings in your state, and ask for advice from colleagues across the country about how to approach a legislative initiative. The interest group is a message board designed to promote, discuss and support the advocacy efforts of school psychologists across the country. Join the interest group here.