Q. I am worried about something at school. How can I get help?
If there is something that is worrying you at school (such as your work, getting into trouble, or feeling anxious or upset), it is important that you talk to your teacher and/or your parent/carer. It might be helpful to ask your parent/carer to arrange a meeting with your teacher so that you can talk about what it is that’s worrying you. Together, you can agree on what extra support could be put in place and this should be reviewed after a period of time. Your teacher might set some targets for you to work towards. Sometimes, your teacher might want to get advice from an outside specialist, such as an Educational Psychologist, to see if they can offer you some support. Other specialists that work with schools include Speech and Language Therapists or Specialist Teachers.
Q. Why might my teacher want to refer me to the Educational Psychology Service?
An Educational Psychologist may want to work with you if you are experiencing difficulties in the following area(s):
- Learning new skills.
- Making progress with learning.
- Expressing yourself or understanding what has been said to you.
- Communicating and interacting with others.
- Physical and sensory needs which are affecting your engagement in school.
- Social and emotional development.
- Being independent.
Your school will usually have tried to support you in different ways before they look for help from an Educational Psychologist. They will always ask for your parent/carer’s consent (and yours if you are over the age of 13) before referring to the Educational Psychology Service.
Q. Can I contact the Educational Psychology Service directly?
If one of our psychologists is involved with you, you or your parent/carer are welcome to call or email to discuss their work at any time. We spend a lot of time out and about in settings or on home visits but will call you back if we have been unavailable. If your call is urgent then one of our other psychologists may be able to answer your query.
Q. Will I be able to see what is written about me?
Our policy is to share any report that we write with your parent/carer and they will receive a copy when it is complete. You may ask your parent/carer or teacher to share this with you and explain it. If you have any questions about the report, you or parent/carer should get in touch with your Educational Psychologist.
Q. What is an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP)?
Some children or young people (aged 3 -25 years) may have something called an Education, Health and Care Plan. This isn’t a very catchy name so some people call it an EHCP for short. An EHCP is a plan put together by different that have been involved in helping a young person in school and with anything relating to their health. The plan has the young person’s views, their parents’ views. It focuses on what the young person’s strengths are (what they do well). It also has in it things that people that support you can do and things that they might need to make sure you are happy, healthy, and are getting the most from school.
Q. What happens during an Education, Health and Care Needs Assessment?
This is sometimes called a Single Assessment or statutory assessment. Lots of different people will say what they think you might need support with.
These people might include:
- Your parents/carers
- Your teachers
- Your doctor
- Someone like an Educational Psychologist, a Speech and Language Therapist or a Social Worker.
When they have done this, the people doing the assessment will decide if you need any more support than a school or college can usually give. If you do need more support than a school or college can usually give, your local council will give you an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
You can have your say about what is put in your EHCP. You might be asked things like:
- What support you think you need
- The school or college you want to go to
- What you want to do in the future.
Q. What are Special Educational Needs (SEN)?
Special Educational Needs (SEN) are things that children or young people might need help with in school. This can mean lots of different things as everyone is different and everyone has different things that they might need a little extra help with.
Q. What will information will be shared about me and who will it be shared with?
Before an Educational Psychologist becomes involved with you we need the permission of your parents. It is also really important that you are happy to work with an EP and that you understand who they are and what they do. What happens with the information you share will depend on the circumstances around how an EP can help. An EP will always be considerate about how they share and protect information about you. However, it is important to know that EPs will always pass on information to other services if they need to share something to help keep you safe.