Clinical Services

Speech-Language Services

speech 79x64Good speaking, listening and thinking skills are important to success in school. A speech-language pathologist (SLP) can help students who have problems with these skills. The following are the areas that an SLP assists with:


The actual physical production of speech sounds. An articulation problem occurs when a child has difficulty pronouncing sounds. Example: a lisp)

The sound produced as a result of vibration of the vocal cords. A voice disorder may occur when an individual’s pitch, loudness, or
vocal quality seems inappropriate. (Example: hoarse, raspy, nasal voice)

Fluency (Stuttering):
The smoothness with which sounds, syllables, words, and phrases are joined in oral language.


Expressive Language:
How a person expresses language. (Example: speaking and writing)

Receptive Language:
How a person understands language. (Example: listening, following instructions, reading) Receptive and Expressive language may be divided into the following three areas:
- semantics (vocabulary)
- syntax (grammar)
- pragmatics (social skills)

What a Speech-Language Pathologist does:

- Receives referrals from schools for services.
- Identifies and Evaluates students with speech and language problems.
- Plans and Conducts activities to improve a student’s speaking, listening and other language skills.
- Collaborates with parents, teachers, caregivers, and other professionals in understanding and meeting a student's speech, language and academic needs.
- Monitors and Documents the effectiveness of treatment and student progress.
-Writes reports.

How are Services Provided?

Team or Individual Consultation
Based on observation and/or input from other team members, SLPs offer advice on the management of children with communication problems.

Assessment and Consultation
The SLP will assess students who have been referred. They will give recommendations to parents and teachers. If necessary, they will refer the student to an outside agency.

Collaborative Programming
Direct work with teachers, educational assistants, resource teachers, and parents to assess program needs in communication and learning. Direct ongoing therapy is typically provided by an educational assistant, under the supervision of the speechlanguage pathologist.

Providing a Stimulating Language Environment:

It is important for children to be surrounded by language and literature.

Read With Your Child
Encourage your child to enjoy books.
- Read to your child on a daily basis
- Take your child to the library/bookstore
- Give books as gifts so your child can build his/her own library
- Stories can be used to promote good language skills, the foundation upon which children learn to read.

Talk With Your Child
Do this as frequently as possible so that your child has an opportunity to enjoy communication and practice language skills.
- Talk about what you see.
- Talk about what you hear.
- Talk about what you’re doing (when engaged in an activity).
- Talk about what your child is doing.
- Talk, talk, talk.

Children learn language by hearing language!

Download Speech-Language services brochure:  pdfSpeech-Language.pdf

School Social Work

social work 79x68As key members of the school team, School Social Workers provide multisystem assessments to determine the impact of various factors contributing to the success of students in the education system. School Social Work promotes the success of all learners by reducing barriers to academic success and healthy socio-emotional development, and supporting student strengths.

Student Services Team:

School Social Workers provide services in schools as one part of the Student Services team, which for any given student, may include:

-School Social Workers
-Resource Teachers
-Guidance Teachers
-Speech & Language Pathologists
-School Psychologists
-School Liaison Workers

The roles and services of School Social Work may include direct and indirect student focused interventions, school-wide interventions and division/system interventions. These are delivered to students, peer groups/classroom, families, school staff or community.

These services may include:
1. Counselling and support services where social/emotional or behavioural factors are affecting school performance. (Examples: Behaviour Planning/Therapy, Adjustment and Coping, Relationships, Mental Health Issues, Anger Management, Attendance, Students at Risk, Divorce and Separation, Grief).

2. Crisis Services may include risk/threat assessment or response to a crisis. (Personal Safety, Critical Incident Debriefing).

3. Prevention/Education services related to healthy development. (Staff Training, Prevention Programs, Parenting Classes).

4. Consultation/Advocacy services may include coordinating services for a student or family, accessing appropriate resources and promoting collaboration between family, school and community. Program and Policy Development.

School Social Workers are employees of Garden Valley School Division. School Social Work services may be provided upon request and may be requested by:
 Classroom teachers
 Resource teachers
 Administrators
 Guidance teachers
 Parents
 Other Clinicians — Where requested, school social workers will be consulted and services initiated through referral process.

Download Social Work services brochure:  pdfSocial_Work.pdf

Clinical Services

hands 177x139Student Services Specialized Supports

Garden Valley School Division provides a number of specialized services through the Clinical Services Team. These services are provided by referral with parental permission and include speech and language, educational psychology, and school social work.

For more information on specific clinical services, please see the Student Services menu.


School Psychology

psych 79x64Psychologists working in schools provide a comprehensive range of psychological services to the school community that include ssessment, diagnosis, intervention, consultation and prevention. Psychologists have strong clinical skills and a broad knowledge base in child and adolescent development, cognitive processes, psychopathology, school and community systems, learning, and behaviour disorders.

The Role of Psychologists in Schools

The roles and services of psychologists in school communities have expanded over the last half-century to include:

 Direct and indirect student-focused interventions
 School-wide interventions
 Division/system interventions
The psychologist may assist in providing services that promote the development of a positive school environment that benefits all
students by:

 Psychological Assessment
 Developing and implementing prevention and early intervention programs such as crisis response and violence prevention
 Collaborating with administrators and teachers to support the inclusion of students with special needs
 Developing and implementing parenting programs
 Consultation and inservicing with teachers concerning child and adolescent development, behaviour management, and learning styles.

Psychological Assessment
Areas Psychologists may assess:

Development, Intellectual Functioning, Learning Style, Emotional Functioning, Neuropsychological Functioning, Behaviour, Personality, Social Functioning. Referral concerns may include: Learning Difficulty, Developmental Problems, Attentional Deficits, Depression, Suicide Risk, Stress and Anxiety, Interpersonal difficulty, Violence and Aggression, Low Self-Esteem, Substance Abuse, Eating Disorders, Trauma, and Effects of Abuse.

Psychologists may be involved in the development and implementation of programs which aim to reduce the prevalence of problems. These include: Suicide Prevention, Bullying, Crisis Response, and Risk and Threat Assessment.

Psychological Intervention
A variety of therapeutic approaches and activities may be utilized such as: Anger Management, Art Therapy, Behaviour Therapy and Management, Cognitive Therapy, Conflict Management, Individual, Family and Group Therapy, Play Therapy, Psychotherapy, Stress Management, and Social Skills Training.

Consultation and Training
Psychologists consult with educators, parents and other professionals, and may provide presentations and workshops for schools, parents, students and community groups.

School Psychologists:
 Understand how schools work and how children learn
 Provide easily accessible, cost-effective mental health services to children
 Promote positive mental health and a safe and effective learning environment.

The following example situations show you how school psychologists typically approach a problem so you will know what to expect:

A Challenged Reader
Tom’s parents were concerned about his reading. They worried that he might fall behind and lose confidence. At school, the teacher noticed that Tom understood the work when it was presented orally but relied on classmates to help him do written work. The school psychologist completed an assessment and worked together with Tom’s parents and teachers to develop a plan to improve his reading and
writing. The plan worked and Tom’s reading and confidence improved. By dealing with learning problems early on, school psychologists can prevent further difficulties.

A Potential Dropout
David was a high school student who frequently skipped classes. He was disruptive in class and had been suspended several times for fighting. After building a relationship with David, the school psychologist helped him learn simple anger control techniques. David’s parents, the school team, and the school psychologist developed a plan to provide open communication. Changes in school and home environments can improve the quality of life for children and family members. School psychologists can be trusted to deal in confidence with sensitive personal and family matters.

Download Psychology services brochure:  pdfPsychology.pdf