Masters Thesis

The school psychology as a problem solver: a systems wide approach to work with high-risk and adjudicated youth

This project presents evidence of my competency within the ten domains of professional practice and knowledge acknowledged by Humboldt State University School Psychology Program. My internship position was with a county office of education, which gave me a broad view of how psychologists move through school systems. My internship placed me into five schools/programs. Having five different placements allowed me to understand different types of students, school structures, and staff. As a county intern my role involved the identification and evaluation of students’ special education related needs. I was involved in positive behavioral programing and providing consultation with teachers. I was able to work with alternative education students, whose families were generationally impoverished and gang affiliated. This gave me knowledge with working within and understanding the students and families I serve. My work with incarcerated youth taught me how to work within an established system to aid my students. My work with moderate to severe preschoolers has taught me the positive impacts of early intervention and much experience working with children on the spectrum. My work within a school for students with severe developmental disabilities has taught me how to work with medically fragile students. This project shows my navigation through these diverse school systems. There are four products that uniquely represent my internship. My products include an initial preschool assessment with a student with a suspected autism spectrum diagnosis. The student’s teacher and parent disagreed on all areas of the student’s abilities. Another psycho educational report demonstrated my ability to research eligibility criteria and assess a student for Specific Learning Disability using a cross battery approach. In another product, I was able to provide a staff training to increase mental health knowledge and create empathy for students. Lastly, I provided counseling services for an individual student to assist with maladaptive classroom behaviors.