Getting Kids to School: Understanding and Supporting the Needs of Children with Attendance Problems

3 hours running time

School attendance problems, if left unaddressed, can drastically impact a student’s social, emotional, and academic functioning. This functional impairment often occurs simultaneously with underlying, complex mental health struggles. Unfortunately, these struggles are persistently heterogeneous in children with attendance problems and can result in confusion when attempting to identify or provide support appropriately. The role of a school psychologist is critical in effectively understanding and supporting these children and their unique needs.
This workshop will help school psychologists to better understand, identify, and support students with school attendance problems and their underlying mental health struggles. We will rely on a dual-factor model to present a holistic approach to student mental health that observes their subjective well-being and clinical pathologies. Appropriate assessment and intervention methods will be outlined in a multi-tiered pathway for different severity or intensity of attendance problems. Further, a functional assessment approach will be outlined to promote more targeted interventions to support attendance problems.

Dr. Zachary D. Maupin, PhD, NCSP, LEP#3828
Zachary Maupin is an assistant professor of clinical practice at Chapman University in Orange, California. He teaches courses on counseling, mental health in the schools, mental health assessment, and internship supervision. Previously, Dr. Maupin served as a school psychologist to provide Educationally Related Mental Health Services (ERMHS) across a unified school district in Los Angeles county. As a school psychologist for the past seven years, Dr. Maupin maintained a regular assessment and counseling caseload while developing programs and procedures to support students’ social, emotional, and behavioral needs. Research interests of Dr. Maupin include school-based mental health services and assessment, school attendance problems, school climate, and transitional services and support for children with disabilities.

Dr. Amy Jane Griffiths, PhD, NCSP, PSY#24536
Dr. Amy Jane Griffiths is a licensed psychologist and a Nationally Certified School Psychologist. Additionally, she is an Assistant Professor at the Attallah College of Educational Studies and a research affiliate at the Thompson Policy Institute on Disability. Before her work at Chapman University, Dr. Griffiths served as a director for an intervention and residential program designed to support youth with disabilities, and mental health needs, to flourish in school and their communities. Her scholarly and research interests focus on how we can prepare children from underserved populations for resilient futures. She studies school system intervention (e.g., psychological well-being and mental health, targeted intervention, program evaluation), as well as career and transition planning and intervention.

Rachel Wiegand M.A., Ed.S., NCSP
Rachel Wiegand is a Nationally Certified School Psychologist in Los Angeles, CA and a first-year doctoral student and Graduate Student Instructor at Chapman University. Before entering the field of school psychology, Rachel taught middle school in New York City for five years. She also serves as a Graduate Research Assistant at the Thompson Policy Institute on Disability where she contributes to research on transition planning and intervention. Her research interests include mental health service provision in the schools.



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