Washington State Association
of School Psychologists    


Uniting school psychologists to support all students through advocacy, leadership, and professional development. 

2018 Spring Lecture Series

Registration for the 2018 Spring Lecture Series is now open! Register here - the first session begins January 19th!

Archived Spring Lecture Series

You can now access previously aired Spring Lecture Series, dating back to 2014, for a discounted price! Please go here for more information.

President's Message

To my fellow School Psychologists,

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! I hope you all are feeling rejuvenated after spending some much deserved time with family and friends. As we settle back into our routines to continue the important work we do to serve the students of Washington State, let’s pause to reflect on what we’ve been up to so far this school year.

This 2017 WSASP Fall Conference was a rousing success! We were so fortunate to have John Kelly, current NASP President as our keynote speaker! Thanks to many last minute on-site registrations, we were able to reach maximum capacity. Other than some space concerns, reviews from attendees were generally very positive. Currently, we are gearing up for our annual Spring Lecture Series. This year, we are featuring presenters from Georgia, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, and Washington on topics such as diagnostic assessment of autism, consulting with teachers on classroom management, best practices in threat assessment, behavior screening in schools, and ethical issues impacting school psychologists. We are also looking forward to our Summer Summit this year, which will be held on August 17, 2018 at the Tacoma Convention Center. Finally, we are already planning the next fall conference to be held at the Sea-Tac Marriott! Your WSASP Professional Development Team has issued a call for presentations so if you know of any great --presenters, please send them our way!

Several members of your board had the opportunity to meet with Glenna Gallo, our new Assistant Superintendent of Special Education at OSPI, who came from Utah.  Ms. Gallo is responsible for ensuring the provision of special education and related services on behalf of more than 130,000 eligible students in Washington.  Superintendent Gallo shared some of her main directives going into the new year, one of which is to eliminate the discrepancy table. Once she uttered those words, she definitely had our attention! She also has plans to streamline the Safety Net process. It did not take long to see that Ms. Gallo is an action- oriented leader who is going to work hard for us. She was interested in what we had to say, and we left the meeting feeling encouraged and grateful that Glenna Gallo has joined us in Washington.

As you will recall from the last edition of, SCOPE we highlighted the changes made to the ESA-School Psychologist certificate. Conversations with Maren Johnson, Program Manager for the Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB) have continued. The PESB recently met to discuss allowing school psychologists with the NBPTS National Board Certificate to renew their ESA residency or pro-cert certificates with a current national board certificate in lieu of clock hours. Additional information from Maren Johnson is referenced below:

The NBPTS National Board certificate would be used in lieu of clock hours for renewing a residency or professional school psychologist certificate. It would not be used to obtain a professional certificate—in other words, the National Board certificate would not be a route to second tier certification for school psychologists.

Current policy, which has existed for many years, is that school psychologists can renew their continuing certificate with a valid NBPTS National Board certificate. This newly clarified policy would provide that same renewal eligibility to residency and professional certificate holders.

Many school psychologists have pursued NBPTS certification in order to obtain the state bonus. School psychologists are eligible for the state NBPTS National Board bonus per WAC 392-140-972, http://apps.leg.wa.gov/WAC/default.aspx?cite=392-140-972, as long as they meet all other bonus eligibility requirements. (This is not PESB WAC, but it is referenced here to provide context.) 

School psychologists generally pursue NBPTS certification in the Exceptional Needs certificate area, or, if they also hold a state school counseling license, through National Board Certification for school counselors from the NBPTS. The NBPTS Exceptional Needs certificate includes, among other activities, completing the following:

  • Investigate a student’s learning or behavior need;
  • Formulate a meaningful question directly related to that student’s need;
  • Design and/or select and then use an assessment tool or tools;
  • Use the information gathered to implement new and/or modified goals; 
  • Instruct in order to foster the featured student's growth and development.

Currently, the only way for school psychologists to obtain a state professional certificate is through the Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) certificate from the National Association of School Psychologists--there would be no change to this policy. In the past, school psychologists were also able to earn a professional certificate through an approved ProCert program. School psychologists may also obtain a continuing certificate through 150 clock hours.

For some other background, it may be helpful for you to know that educators in Washington State who hold certificates in multiple roles (teacher, administrator, ESA) may renew all of their certificates with the same set of 100 clock hours or four PGPs (Professional Growth Plans). They are not required to submit a separate set of clock hours or PGPs for each of the certificates they hold. For example, if someone holds both a school psychologist and school counselor certificate; or both a school psychologist and administrator certificate; they are not required to complete 200 clock hours instead of 100 clock hours every five years--they can renew both certificates with the same set of clock hours or PGPs.

WSASP is in support of allowing school psychologists to renew their residency and pro-cert certificates with a valid NBPTS National Board certificate in lieu of clock hours. We will keep you posted on the final outcome of this recommendation.

Finally, I hope that many of you are planning to attend the NASP annual convention in Chicago, IL February 13-16. This year’s theme is  THE POWER OF ONE: CREATING CONNECTIONS.   Remember, the simple day to day interactions we have with students do make a difference!

As your WSASP President, I’ve become more aware of the work you are all doing in your districts and it is impressive! Despite the shortages that  leave many of us with larger caseloads, we still strive to do our best work advocating for students and  families. As you continue working the remainder of this school year, remember to take time to take time to care for yourselves, and know that WSASP is here for to support you!

Cheers!

Dr. Tracy Pennington
WSASP President

Washington State Association of School Psychologists
PO Box 525
Cheney, WA 99004
contact@wsasp.org
509-724-1587
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