COVID-19 Guidance and Resources

WSASP has released its COVID-19 Closure Guidance Document.

Please submit additional questions not addressed by this document using this submission form.

Click here to access current OSPI guidance for special education. School psychologists should follow district guidance and procedures.

Click here to access the NASP COVID-19 Resource Center.

Spring Lecture Series 2020

Our 2020 Spring Lecture Series is now available for registration. See our line up of talks here and register for this amazing webinar series here

President's Message

The Presidential Message I wrote at the end of February seems not quite appropriate as I write this after the first full week of school closure. So much has changed so quickly! Everything about the way we do our jobs is in flux. It has only been a few days, and I am already missing my usual social connections at work, at the gym, at church, and at book club.

When I started as WSASP President last year, the two topics I wanted to focus on were Connections and Self-Care. In this time, I cannot think of anything more important!

Staying connected with our school psychology colleagues, as well as with our teachers, students and their families, is so important in a time of anxiety and changing expectations. Taking care of ourselves is critical before we can do our jobs.

The CDC says just what I was thinking:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html

Things you can do to support yourself

  • Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.
  • Take care of your body. Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditate. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, and avoid alcohol and drugs.
  • Make time to unwind. Try to do some other activities you enjoy.
  • Connect with others. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling.

Connecting with others is a form of self-care. Now that we are not seeing our colleagues every day, and our other groups and activities are cancelled, we must get creative about how to keep those connections alive. This week my book club and my district school psychologist group met via an online meeting platform. Online meetings are not as satisfying as gathering together in the same room, but if you have the technology, use it. Old-fashioned phone calls work too!

For those of us who are expected to keep working remotely, having trusted colleagues who support each other and who are willing to help and give suggestions makes this difficult job easier. Keep in touch with your district colleagues. Reach out to WSASP. Join the WSASP Facebook group. It can be a place to ask questions and catch up on what other school psychologists are doing. Or join the “Said no school psychologist ever” Facebook group for thoughts from school psychologists around the country.

If you have been to the NASP Public Policy Institute, you have seen this slide. I have it in my office with my Gumby figure. Remember: We can be flexible, and we will get through this!

WE ARE BETTER TOGETHER!


Laurie Engelbeck, Ph.D., NCSP
WSASP President
Issaquah School District

Washington State Association of School Psychologists
816 W. Francis Ave #214
Spokane, WA 99205
contact@wsasp.org
509-724-1587
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