Can you explain the school observation recommended by the Psychologist?

In this article we will discuss the school observation booking process, purpose and other frequently asked questions regarding this service.

School observations are often recommended by our psychologists so they can observe a child’s specific behaviour or overall functioning in the school environment. It is an opportunity to increase the amount of information available for the purpose of a psychological assessment and to make recommendations more specific. Observations are sometimes required to complete a diagnostic assessment or simply to attend to a parent’s request for a second opinion about the child's behaviour in the school setting. 

  • What is a school observation?

    A school observation is an opportunity for a psychologist to observe a child in the school setting to record key behaviours or environmental factors that may be contributing to the child's difficulties and challenges.

  • How long do they last?

    School observations conducted by our psychologists often last between 1 to 2 hours. There are situations where the duration may be increased or multiple sessions are needed to be carried out.

  • How is a school observation booked?

    Once a recommendation or request is made, our customer service team will send you an email outlining the request in writing, which will include key information like costs and processes. Parents are required to approve the observation in writing. Following the approval, a customer service staff member will contact the school on your behalf to arrange a suitable time for the school observation, taking into account the schedules of the psychologist and the school.

    Our customer support staff will call and/or email the school. This means that for organisational and logistical purposes, multiple people in the school may be aware that an observation will be taking place. It is common that we may need to obtain clearance from the principal, counselling team and teacher(s).

  • How much will it cost?

    The school observation is charged in accordance with the psychologist's schedule of fees. The charges may include administration time, travel time and costs (toll, parking, taxis) and professional time. An estimate of costs will be included on the request email. Please note that the final costs can vary +15% from the estimated cost.

  • Will my child know he/she is been observed?

    The observation is completed for different reasons, which makes the answer to this question dependent on a range of factors. In some cases, the child will not be aware he/she is been observed, but in other cases the child will know. Your psychologist will be able to provide a specific answer to this question based on the purpose of the observation.

  • Who else will be involved?

    Multiple people within the school may be directly or indirectly involved with the observation. This often depends on the school size, structure, procedures and requirements. It is likely, however, that the following people will be aware an observation is being conducted for any given child: the Principal, school counsellor and other members of the counselling team, school administration staff, and the child's teacher/s.

    The purpose and content of the observation will only be discussed with the authorised people.

  • What about my privacy?

    The client's privacy is managed in accordance with our privacy policy. However, it is very important that clients concerned about their privacy when involving the school discuss their specific requirements with their psychologist before approving a school observation. This may require you to arrange additional time to plan and strategise the school observation.

    The purpose and content of notes related to the school observation are kept private and only discussed with authorised people. However, as discussed above, multiple people will become aware that the school observation is taking place. 

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