ERIC Number: ED253810
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Apr-19
Reference Count: 0
Teaching and Using Family Systems Thinking for Effective Pre-Referral Intervention.
Howard, Judith S.
Children who require modification of curriculum and methods in the regular classroom have often been inappropriately labeled as handicapped, and placed in special education programs to maintain the status quo in the schools. A need exists to break this cycle by training present and future school psychologists in methods of case analysis and intervention. The ecologically-oriented school consultation model interrupts the cycle of finding fault and assigning blame and focuses instead on restructuring the dysfunctional social systems in the school. The traditional approach operates under the assumption that attitudinal change in the caretaker will effect change in the child; the behavioral orientation works with the caretaker to change the consequences of the undesirable behavior, thus modifying the child. The family theory orientation would shift focus from the child's and/or caretaker's behavior to that of the child's family or the school-family interface. Treatment focus can then be directed towards changing nonproductive transactions between the identified child, teacher, classmates, administrator, parents, agents of the community, and self as the intervening professional. Teaching school psychology externs to think and to intervene systemically is the major thrust of the two semester Professional Seminars in School Psychology taught at Kean College of New Jersey. The seminar instructors use the ecological model derived from family systems theory, and methods borrowed from family therapy to effect second order changes in students' thinking about the role and the function of school psychologists. (A sample of teaching materials used to enhance systems-oriented thinking and behavior in school psychology trainees is appended). (LLL)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Support Staff
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Family Systems Theory
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association of School Psychologists (16th, Philadelphia, PA, April 18-21, 1984).