Idaho School Psychologist Association

NASP Highlights

From the April 2009 Newsletter

It was a wonderful conference in Boston, wish you were there. Despite the cold weather, Boston is a wonderful city. Your delegate was able to arrive a day early to do some sightseeing, as I have not been to the bastion of American liberty before. My lovely wife and I were able to see Symphony Hall, the Boston Commons (the park bench scene from Good Will Hunting was shot there), the Bull & Finch (the exterior scene of Cheers from the TV show), the Governor’s House (site of the British government), the site of the Boston Massacre (actually, there were two massacres – not sites), Faneuil Hall, the USS Constitution (Old Ironsides), Paul Revere’s House, the old North Church (one if by land, two if by sea), Fenway Park (go Red Socks!), and courtesy of ISPA President, Cirstin Zimmerman; a most wonderful Italian meal (mamma mia ! ! !) topped off by a visit to Mike’s Pastries (just walking in the door is worth at least 4,000 calories!).

It was not all fun & games; I attended some very informative workshops regarding new uses of the BASC-2, recent legal rulings in special education from around the country, integrating NASP standards regarding supervision of interns, and how to determine special education eligibility using RtI. I would be happy to share the information I gained with any interested groups (regions?).

Then came the work involved as your delegate. The Delegate Assembly discussed how the current national economic situation is impacting NASP’s financial status (you’re hurting; NASP is hurting). Luckily, our association has reserves to utilize during these rough times. New dues structures were adopted. The first involves early career school psychologists. The NASP student dues remain at $55. A 1st year practitioner will pay $130; a 2nd year practitioner will pay $160. The full membership of $175 would apply in the 3rd year. The next dues structure change effects those of us who have difficulty coming up with $175 in one chunk. NASP will now allow us to pay our dues in three equal installments of $60 (this includes a measly $5 fee). Ah, NASP is now affordable to all!

Ethically speaking, the national Ethics Committee has been involved with many complaints this past year; many of which involve technology, as well as the development of new ethical guidelines (review & comment at

Those of you who hold the NCSP will be interested to know that 10 units from a NASP Approved Provider will be required for the next re- certification, with an increase of 5 hours/year until 25 of 75 are required. This number of approved provider units will increase as the number of NASP Approved Providers coming on board increases. Your state association is in the process of becoming a NASP Approved Provider of continuing education. If ISPA is approved, this means you could earn NCSP renewal units by attending ISPA conferences and workshops.

It’s back again; the APA Model Licensure Act. The newest version allows school psychologists who have an earned doctorate to call themselves ‘school psychologists’. The rest of us, who have an Ed.S., would have to call ourselves something else. Likewise, graduate programs that are not doctoral level programs would need to graduate something other than ‘school psychologists’. Even the state Department of Education would have to certificate us as something other than 'school psychologists'. President Cirstin Zimmermann has requested assistance from any and all ISPA members to become involved in a committee to prepare for possible responses in Idaho if needed. I encourage all members to become involved in this extremely important issue. If you desire, I am willing to meet with folks on a regional level to discuss this issue.

NASP Standards (Credentialing, Ethics, Graduate Preparation, and Practice Standards) are undergoing significant revision; provide your comments at prior to March 31, 2009.

NASP is developing a public awareness campaign to raise our visibility with the public. Issues to be addressed include: links between social-emotional stability and learning, protection frrocess. Interest groups on RtI and om all MLA, and targeting administrators and school boards. We need to change our focus from school mental health to school improvement.

School psychologists are reminded that month of April is the 10th anniversary of Columbine and the 2nd anniversary of Virginia Tech. Be watchful for those to whom these anniversaries are traumatic.

Position papers Early Childhood Assessment, Appropriate Academic Supports, and Appropriate Behavior Supports were approved; these will be posted on the NASP Website soon. Position papers on Over-Representation and Hearing Impaired continue in the development process. Interest groups on RtI and Gifted/Talented were approved. Lively discussion was held on the Recruitment of Culturally Diverse School Psychologists and Involvement in Assessment position papers.

Summer conference will be held at Alburquerque, New Mexico July 20 & 21, 2009. The theme is 'Culturally Competent Practice'.

The Children's Fund Auction earned approximately $16,000. Idaho donated an ISPA bag which contained a mug with a cowboy prayer, a potato cookbook, and selection of local snack items, a 2-lb box of Idaho Spud candy bars, and a bottle of St. Chappell wine. ISPA members are reminted that these funds are available to All NASP members; all you need do is write a grant. There seems to be a perception that this fund is used only in the city where the convention is located; nothing could be further from the truch.


Ray James, NASP Delegate for Idaho
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