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Educational Psychology (EP) and Early Years

Who are the Educational Psychology (EP) service?

Educational Psychologists are part of the Learning and Early Support Service and work with parents, education and other agencies to support children and young people age 0-25.  Our role is to help school staff, parents and carers to:

  • find solutions to improve the learning outcomes of children
  • support children’s social and emotional development and wellbeing

We have all had experience of working with children and young people before qualifying as Educational Psychologists and are registered with the Health and Care Professionals Council.

What does an Educational Psychologist do?

We understand how early years children learn and why they might experience difficulties with emotions.  We are most effective when working with the adult involved with a child or young person.  We aim to support parents, carers and education staff working with children in understanding their needs and planning the best way to help them make progress.

We can become involved where children in early years settings have a My Support Plan or an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) where adults are concerned about the best way to support that child and think there needs to be a significant change in the type of support required.  

We work very closely with the Early Years SEN team as they are typically involved in working with young children with special educational needs. Whilst requests  for involvement will come directly from pre-school/nursery settings, in the main this will have been facilitated by an Early Years SEN practitioner.

When a request for our involvement has been agreed we always have a meeting with pre-school/nursery  staff and parents/carers.  This is called a consultation meeting and everyone has the chance to share their perspective. 

We will talk about your child’s strengths and difficulties and work together to make sense of what might be happening.  We use this approach because we believe that working together with the adults who know a child well is essential to understanding the unique needs of any child or young person. Using this approach helps us to make sure that support is carefully tailored to suit the child and their school situation.

Often this is enough to decide what needs to happen next.  Occasionally we may all agree that we need to be involved further, for example, meet the child or observe them in class and this would be discussed further.

If you are concerned about your child’s progress or wellbeing in pre-school/nursery, we advise that you speak with the SENCO in your child’s setting in the first instance. 

Last updated: 24/11/2020