Frequently Asked Questions
Please find the answers to some frequently asked questions about our service below.
If you have other questions, please contact us by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01506 283130.
If a parent/carer, child/young person or another professional involved with a child is concerned about a child's learning and/or wellbeing, the first step is to speak with the school or early years setting.
We can also be contacted using the contact details found on this website.
Schools/early years settings can contact their link educational psychologist at any time to discuss concerns. Parents/carers* will always be asked to give consent for this discussion. Often, this conversation will help to think of ideas to improve things and this will be shared with parents/carers* by the school. The educational psychologist will not meet parents/carers* or children at this stage. If, after trying some new approaches to help, the concerns continue, then it may be helpful to have a meeting in school with parents/carers* to talk about things in more detail. Actions will be agreed at this meeting.
*Young people aged 12 years and over, who are able to, must also give consent for involvement with the Educational Psychology Service. They should be included in meetings about them and given copies of relevant information.
A link to our GDPR statement can be found here:
A child or young person is said to have additional support needs where, for whatever reason, they need additional support with their education. Additional support needs can be short or long term, and may come about for a number of reasons (e.g. a child or young person may have behaviour or learning difficulties, sensory impairment, be particularly gifted, experience bullying or bereavement). The Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004 places duties on local authorities, and other agencies, to provide additional support where required to enable any child or young person to benefit from education.
For most pupils with additional support needs, their educational needs can be met within a mainstream setting, so you would contact the school in your new catchment area directly to enrol your child.
If your child has been attending a specialist provision in your previous Authority, then contact West Lothian Educational Psychology Service once you have a confirmed moving date and a West Lothian address. With your permission, we will contact the Educational Psychology Service and other relevant agencies in your previous Authority for background information and may carry out our own assessment in order to make recommendations for the most appropriate school placement for your child within West Lothian. All information gathered about your child will be sent to the relevant planning group, which will make a decision about school placement for your child.
No. Most children and young people who have additional support needs have their needs met through the support systems available within schools. However, an Educational Psychologist is often involved in consultation with school staff, parents, and other involved professionals about pupils who have additional support needs. We may also do direct work to help to identify the pupil's additional support needs and to recommend educational strategies to help meet their needs.
Through involvement in training, research and project work, Educational Psychologists contribute to developments in schools which support the learning and progress of all pupils, including those with additional support needs.
If you live in West Lothian but your child attends a school in another authority you should contact the Head Teacher in your child's school in the first instance to discuss their needs.
Educational Psychologists continue to work during school holidays. We may be involved in home visits for some children and young people, and there is also ongoing work with those who don't attend West Lothian schools, for example children who are not yet at nursery or those who attend residential schools. Work with our partners outwith education goes on all year round, for example liaising with colleagues in Social Policy or the Health Service. The summer holidays are also a time to plan and prepare training, staff development and research projects for the following session.
An Educational Psychologist will have an undergraduate degree in psychology (or equivalent) and a postgraduate Masters in Educational Psychology.
A Clinical Psychologist will also have an undergraduate degree in psychology (or equivalent) and a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology.
A Psychiatrist is someone who is medically trained and has chosen to specialise in mental health.
We constantly work to make our service better so welcome comments and suggestions. You can do this by speaking to youror by contacting the Principal Educational Psychologist.