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10.58.707    SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS

(1) The program requires that successful candidates:

(a) demonstrate an understanding of the integrated and comprehensive training philosophy/mission, goals, objectives, program of study, and supervised practice;

(b) demonstrate knowledge of these domains in the field of school psychology by:

(i) applying data-based decision making and accountability through varied models and methods of assessment and data collection for identifying strengths and needs, developing effective services and programs, and measuring progress and outcomes;

(ii) applying varied models and strategies of consultation, collaboration, and communication applicable to individuals, families, groups, and systems, and methods to promote effective implementation of services;

(iii) applying effective interventions and instructional support to develop academic skills through a thorough understanding of biological, cultural, and social influences on academic skills; human learning, cognitive, and developmental processes; and evidence-based curricula and instructional strategies;

(iv) applying interventions and mental health services to develop social and life skills to promote social-emotional understanding of biological, cultural, developmental, and social influences on behavior and mental health, behavioral and emotional impacts on learning and life skills, and evidence-based strategies;

(v) understanding individual differences, abilities, disabilities, and other individual student characteristics, principles, and research related to diversity factors for children, families, and schools, factors related to culture, including American Indians and tribes in Montana, context, and individual and role difference; and evidence-based strategies to enhance services and address potential influences related to diversity in development and learning;

(vi) applying schoolwide practices and systems organization, policy development, and climate to promote learning;

(vii) applying principles and research related to resilience and risk factors in learning and mental health, supporting services in schools and communities, multi-tiered prevention, and evidence-based strategies for effective crisis response;

(viii) applying principles and research related to family systems, strengths, needs, and culture; evidence-based strategies to support family influences on childrenꞌs learning and mental health; and strategies to develop collaboration between families and schools;

(ix) applying research, design, statistics, measurement, varied data collection and analysis techniques, and program evaluation sufficient for understanding research and interpreting data in applied settings;

(x) applying the history and foundations of school psychology; multiple service models and methods; ethical, legal, and professional standards; and other factors related to professional identity and effective practice as school psychologists legal, ethical, and professional practice; and

(xi) integrating information technology into school psychologist practice;

(d) demonstrate knowledge and understanding of orientation to the educational process, assessment for intervention, direct intervention, and indirect intervention.

(2) The provider shall ensure that:

(a) practica experiences are distinct from and occur prior to the internship;

(b) practica occur at scheduled time(s), are of sufficient length, and are in settings appropriate to the specific training objectives of the program;

(c) there is a direct and obvious relationship between practica experiences and the objectives for which the practica are intended;

(d) practica experiences occur under conditions of supervision appropriate to the specific training objectives of the program;

(e) practica experiences are provided appropriate recognition through the awarding of academic credit;

(f) practica experiences occur with university involvement appropriate to the specific training objectives of the program;

(g) the quality of practica experiences is systematically evaluated in a manner consistent with the specific training objectives of the program;

(h) practica experiences are conducted in accordance with current legal-ethical standards for the profession;

(i) candidates demonstrate knowledge of the roles, responsibilities, and functions of other pupil service personnel, including the operation of interdisciplinary teams; and

(j) candidates demonstrate knowledge of available school and community resources.

(3) The comprehensive internship is the culminating experience in school psychology graduate preparation. The successful school psychologist candidates:

(a) demonstrate, under supervision, their ability to integrate knowledge and skills in providing a broad range of school psychological services and the internship experience:

(i) is provided at or near the end of the formal training period;

(ii) is designed according to a written plan that provides the student opportunities to gain experience in the delivery of a broad range of school psychological services;

(iii) occurs in a setting appropriate to the specific training objectives of the program;

(iv) is provided appropriate recognition through the awarding of academic credit;

(v) occurs under conditions of appropriate supervision (field-based internship supervisors shall hold a valid credential as a school psychologist for that portion of the internship that is in a school setting, and the portion of the internship, which appropriately may be in a nonschool setting, requires supervision by an appropriately credentialed psychologist);

(vi) is supervised (field-based internship supervisors are responsible for no more than two interns at any given time, and university internship supervisors are responsible for no more than 12 interns at any given time);

(vii) is based on a positive working relationship and represents a collaborative effort between the university program and field-based supervisors to provide an effective learning experience for the student and university internship supervisors provide at least one on-site contact per semester with each intern and supervisor;

(viii) is a provision for participation in continuing professional development activities;

(ix) is systematically evaluated for quality in a manner consistent with the specific training objectives of the program;

(x) is conducted in a manner consistent with the current legal-ethical standards of the profession; and

(xi) occurs on a full-time basis over a period of one academic year, or on a half-time basis over a period of two consecutive academic years, and at least 600 hours of the internship are completed in a school setting;

(b) complete a field-based internship supervised, on average, at least two hours per week of direct supervision for each intern;

(c) accept an internship placement that provides appropriate support for the internship experience including:

(i) a written agreement specifying the period of appointment and any terms of compensation;

(ii) a schedule of appointments, expense reimbursement, a safe and secure work environment, adequate office space, and support services consistent with that afforded agency school psychologists;

(iii) provision for participation in continuing professional development activities;

(iv) release time for internship supervision; and

(v) a commitment to the internship as a diversified training experience.

(4) The provider ensures that school psychology training programs employ systematic, valid evaluation of candidates, coursework, practica, internship, faculty, supervisors, and resources and use the resulting information to monitor and improve program quality. The provider ensures that school psychology graduate programs shall:

(a) establish and maintain an accountability program to assess the knowledge and capabilities of school psychology candidates and of the impact that interns and graduates have on services to children, youth, families, and other consumers;

(b) incorporate different sources of process and performance information (e.g., instructional evaluation, performance portfolios, field supervisor evaluations, systematic valid procedures are used to evaluate and improve the quality of the program, candidate/graduate performance on licensing/certification examinations, and alumni follow-ups), as appropriate, to evaluate and improve components of the program;

(c) apply specific published criteria, both objective and qualitative, for the assessment and admission of candidates to the program at each level and for candidate retention and progression in the program. The criteria address the academic and professional competencies, as well as the professional work characteristics needed for effective practice as a school psychologist (including respect for human diversity, communication skills, effective interpersonal relations, ethical responsibility, adaptability, and initiative/dependability);

(d) employ a systematic process that ensures that all students possess the knowledge and professional expertise to collaborate with families and school and community based professionals in designing, implementing, and evaluating interventions that effectively respond to the educational and mental health needs of children and youth;

(e) limit the number of credit hours acquired through courses, seminars, and other learning experiences not open exclusively to graduate students to no more than one-third of the student’s program;

(f) exclude credit requirements for undergraduate study, study that is remedial, or study which is designed to remove deficiencies in meeting requirements for program admission; and

(g) include a full-time continuous residency or an alternate planned experience for all students and programs allowing alternate planned experiences as a substitute for full-time residency must demonstrate how those experiences are equivalent to experiences commonly associated with residency requirements.

(5) The provider ensures that specialist-level programs follow the standards described by NASP, and:

(a) specialist-level programs consist of a minimum of three years of full-time study or the equivalent at the graduate level;

(b) the program shall include at least 60 graduate semester hours or the equivalent, at least 54 hours of which are exclusive of credit for the supervised internship experience;

(c) institutional documentation of program completion shall be provided; and

(d) specialist level programs include a minimum of one academic year of supervised internship experience consisting of a minimum of 1200 clock hours.

(6) The provider ensures that doctoral programs follow the standards described by NASP. Doctoral programs provide greater depth in multiple domains of school psychology training and practice as specified in these standards. The provider ensures that:

(a) doctoral programs consist of a minimum of four years of full-time study or the equivalent at the graduate level;

(b) the program includes a minimum of 90 graduate semester hours or the equivalent, at least 78 of which are exclusive of credit for the doctoral supervised internship experience and any terminal doctoral project (e.g., dissertation) and shall culminate in institutional documentation; and

(c) the program includes a minimum of one academic year of doctoral supervised internship experience consisting of a minimum of 1500 clock hours.

History: 20-2-114, MCA; IMP, 20-2-121, MCA; NEW, 1979 MAR p. 492, Eff. 5/25/79; AMD, 1984 MAR p. 831, Eff. 5/18/84; AMD, 1989 MAR p. 397, Eff. 3/31/89; AMD, 1994 MAR p. 2722, Eff. 10/14/94; AMD, 2000 MAR p. 2406, Eff. 9/8/00; AMD, 2007 MAR p. 190, Eff. 2/9/07; AMD, 2014 MAR p. 2936, Eff. 7/1/15.

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