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DU Helps to Shape National Conversation about Role of School Psychologists

A Duquesne University education professor, along with other educational leaders and Congress, has worked to have the week of Nov. 9 declared as National School Psychologist Week, drawing attention to the academic and social support services school psychologists provide across the country.

Dr. Tammy Hughes, associate professor of school psychology in the School of Education at Duquesne and president of the Division of School Psychology (16) of the American Psychology Association, has been involved in the discussions leading to the push for this week to be recognized. The resolution was recently introduced in both the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives with bipartisan support. Having a strong show of support for this resolution will help pave the way for the adoption of these resolutions in the fall and will also help garner support for other programmatic legislation in the future. The week is intended to educate parents that school personnel are available to help the whole child.

“It is about reading and math, but it is not just about reading and math,” Hughes said. “Mental health and social development go hand-in-hand with learning. School psychologists can help refocus kids who have mental health needs, which has a broader implication with reading, math and other schoolwork.”

As the first advocates for their children, parents should ask their school psychologists about any academic or social concerns, which could run the gamut from grades and homework to issues with bullying, depression and social isolation, to issues such as autism, Hughes said.

“By tapping into the resources school psychologists can provide, parents can help their children to grow in all areas of their lives, academically and well as socially, throughout their school careers,” Hughes said.

To learn more, visit www.apa.org and click on “topics” or “help center.”

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.