Wednesday, November 11, 2009

School Psychology Awareness Week

School psychologists promote positive possibilities and encourage gratitude towards others during National School Psychology Awareness Week—November 9–13, 2009

Bethesda, MD—The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) has designated November 9–13, 2009 as National School Psychology Awareness Week. This year’s theme, “See the possibilities in you. We do!” seeks to shine a light on the positive work school psychologists do to promote the possibilities for academic and personal success in the lives of the students they serve. The program involves a series of resources and activities that school psychologists can use to reach out to school staff, students and parents to help students feel connected, supported, and ready to achieve their individual goals.

NASP represents more than 25,500 school psychologists who work in schools and other education and health settings. School psychologists work with parents and educators to ensure that every child has the mental health and learning support they need to succeed in school and life. This year’s program focuses promoting students’ positive attitudes and competence by highlighting student strengths and the many ways schools reinforce those strengths. Specifically, school psychologists will be recognizing students who make significant progress toward their goals through the “Student POWER Award” Program and honoring adult members of the school community who contribute in an outstanding way to improved outcomes for students through the “Possibilities in Action Partner” Program.

“Adults make many important contributions to the development of children. Seeing and advancing the possibilities within students, even in the face of difficulties, is critical to helping them achieve their best in school, at home, and in life.” says NASP President Patti Harrison. “Some people go above and beyond, making extraordinary efforts to promote students’ competencies, create opportunities for children to meet their goals, and expand schools’ capacity to foster success. We want to recognize these adults who are partners for ‘Possibilities in Action’ and have been admirable influences on the lives of children.”

Additionally this year, NASP is launching the “Gratitude Works” Program, an effort to have students around the country write letters of gratitude to someone who has made a difference in their life or the lives of others. The “Gratitude Works” Program seeks to reinforce students’ practice of gratitude as one of many prosocial behaviors that can foster individual resilience and well-being as well as contribute to overall positive school climate. Promoting positive attitudes, such as gratitude, helps students become more aware of the strengths in themselves and others. Research has revealed that children who feel and express gratitude express more positive views of both home and school and improve their academic performance.

School psychologists around the country are working with teachers to help students identify and honor school staff, family members, students, and other educators or community members who contribute to their ability to achieve their best. Some students are choosing to write letters of gratitude to people who they do not even know personally, such as military servicemen and women and emergency responders.

As part of National School Psychology Awareness Week, NASP has developed downloadable and adaptable resources to help school psychologists participate in these programs. Further information on these programs, school psychologists and the contribution they make in guiding student success is available online at

For further information contact NASP Director of Marketing and Communications, Kathy Cowan at (301) 347-1665 or, or visit

Ready to Learn, Empowered to Teach, Excellence in Education for the 21st Century: National Association of School Psychologists' Guiding Principles for Effective Education


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