523 The School-Savvy Therapist
Saturday Afternoon Only
Kids spend most of their waking hours at school, and yet most child and family therapists work only cursorily with schools, if at all, . . .
and when they do, the focus is almost always on pathology--the child’s disruptiveness or the family’s lack of cooperation. But there may never have been a time when schools, families, and kids faced so many interlocking stressors. Today’s schools are trying to raise test scores and provide special education, while facing slashed budgets, increasingly burned-out teachers, and issues like racism, poverty, immigration, language difficulties, and antagonistic relationships with parents. In this workshop, we’ll review the everyday demands faced by teachers and staff in public, urban schools and the conflicts that typically arise around “problem children.” You’ll learn how to make sure that diagnostic testing actually yields practical approaches to behavioral and learning difficulties. We’ll explore ways to increase parent-teacher dialogue and engage school staff as “co-therapists.” You’ll leave with some new approaches for dealing with life in today’s pressure-cooker schools.
Joe O’Callaghan, L.C.S.W
, is Department Chair of Social Work of Stamford Public Schools and an adjunct professor at New York University School of Social Work. He has a private psychotherapy and consultation practice, primarily helping adolescents and their families.