MSPP Launches New School Psychology Program to Help Meet National Need for Mental Health Providers for Children
Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology Now Accepting Applicants
October 20, 2005
West Roxbury, MA – To help address a growing national need for child mental health services, Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology has launched its new School Psychology Specialist program this week. Recently accredited by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and scheduled to welcome its first class in September 2006, the program will expand beyond traditional practice that focuses on testing and assessment, to emphasize professional skills that help children successfully manage the emotional, social and developmental barriers to learning.
The need for well-trained child mental health professionals has never been greater. In 1999, the Surgeon General issued a report that exposed a glaring shortage in mental health professional trained to respond to a growing crisis in the mental health of the nation’s children. “In addition to the usual developmental struggles of childhood, children today are grappling with concerns about school safety, family trauma, divorces, and even world events that rock their sense of security ,” says Dr. Bob Lichtenstein, program director.
“Because kids spend most of their time there, school is a place where mental health services can and must begin,” says Lichtenstein, who believes that well-trained school psychologists can help address the critical shortage in children’s mental health services.
“We are very excited about this new course of study. Under Dr. Lichtenstein’s leadership, MSPP will continue its tradition of providing an educational experience that integrates a comprehensive academic foundation with a rich clinical experience to prepare school psychologists to meet the evolving mental health needs of our community.” says Dr. Nicholas Covino, President of MSPP.
While MSPP’s program will rigorously train its students in tools to evaluate learning and developmental issues, it will also ground them in the clinical skills necessary to provide behavioral and mental health consultation to those involved in the life of a child – teachers, administrators, and parents. “ W e want them to be able to provide individual and family counseling when appropriate and to consult with other specialists and school personnel when needed,” adds Lichtenstein.
Upon completion of the three-year School Psychology Specialist program, graduate will receive a master of arts in professional psychology and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in School Psychology.