Data-Driven Decisions or Data-Informed Decisions?
We recently finished our 3rd annual summer boot camp which was a two-week program, custom-designed to provide resources, learning opportunities, and professional development for school psychologists. One takeaway from summer boot camp worth sharing is around the topic of data-driven information. When information is data-driven, it tends to focus solely on numbers and statistics. As important as numbers are, school psychologists need context about the students behind those numbers in order to make informed decisions. I love the idea of data-informed decisions instead. We must remember that each student is unique and that numbers shouldn’t be making educational decisions for us. Let’s look closely at other top takeaways from our recent summer boot camp! If you are interested in watching a replay of the live recording where I discuss these topics, please click here.
Time Management and Efficiency
As I reflect on summer boot camp, one important takeaway to keep in mind is that there are no shortcuts when completing a thorough evaluation. While it’s appropriate to use effective time management strategies such as having pre-made assessment templates and parent interview questions or bringing your laptop to the student observation and typing it directly into your report, school psychologists should not cut corners for the sake of time in many areas. Remember, to conduct a thorough evaluation, you must take the time to synthesize assessment data, interviews, observations, eligibility criteria, etc. to best understand the unique needs of each child.
What Works and What Doesn’t?
There were some great takeaways regarding the power of reflecting on past and current practices. School psychologists can ask themselves what has worked well for their special education team. Are there things that need to be changed? The last couple of years have been difficult due to school closures and we are all hoping referral rates will decrease. But even if they don’t, what are some things we want to do to be more efficient? What areas do we want to improve upon around facilitating IEP meetings and presenting results in parent-friendly ways? The field of school psychology is constantly evolving and therefore school psychologists to reflect on their practices.
We recently finished our 3rd annual Summer Boot Camp! If you did not get a chance to access our live sessions, don’t worry because we recorded everything and all replays are still available for purchase!
The recorded sessions focus on report writing, comprehensive ED assessments, LQBTQ+ students, Autism, and behavior. You will also gain access to useful tips, looking at data in different ways, answers to commonly asked questions, summarizing findings, and information about Dyslexia. But hurry because these recordings are only available until October 31st!