Awarded the 2018 Educator of the Year Award by the Learning Disability Association of America!

 I will  be offering workshops in the PSW approach to identifying a SLD to the following groups: Westwood School District (9/5); Fairfleld School District (9/14); Little Silver School District (9/22); Mountain Lakes School District (10/4); Hanover Park School district (10/9); NJ Association of Learning Consultants (10/20); Newark School District (11/2, 11/6); Rutgers GSAPP Continuing Education (12/6).

I continue to offer training in conducting evaluations for specific learning disabilities at the following districts: Westwood (1/15/24); Newark (2/20 & 2/22/24); Southampton (2/16/24); and Burlington (2/26/24).

Educational & Mental Health Services During COVID

Learning and Neuropsychological Screening

Many parents are reporting that their student is not learning using remote instruction and worry about their child falling behind.

A learning screening is a quick way to compare your student’s current level of achievement with the level of achievement expected for his or her grade level or age. This will give you normative information that will tell you if your student is falling behind, how much they are lagging behind, and in which specific academic areas.

A neuropsychological screening can be very helpful in determining whether a student’s current struggles are due to problems in cognitive ability, executive functioning (EF), or both. It is not unusual for students who have EF issues with activating to work, sustaining attention and effort, memory, planning and organization, and emotional regulation to have increased difficulty in the context of remote instruction. A screening, which includes a clinical interview, and the administration of a number of EF instruments can help to understand if a problem is due to attention or memory as well as a host of other EF domains. Once this information is obtained from the screening, targeted interventions can be prescribed.

Anxiety and Depression

Children, adolescents, and adults who have been predisposed to anxiety or depression may experience increased levels of these issues during covid due to the challenge of social isolation. Even individuals who have not experienced anxiousness or sadness before may be vulnerable to these emotions now due to the many uncertainties of the covid era.

-Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety:

Feeling nervous, restless or tense more often than not

  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom
  • Having an increased heart rate
  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)
  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Feeling weak or tired
  • Trouble concentrating or thinking about anything other than the present worry
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems
  • Having difficulty controlling worry
  • Having the urge to avoid things that trigger anxiety

From the Mayo Clinic

-Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness or hopelessness

  • Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, even over small matters
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies or sports
  • Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much
  • Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks take extra effort
  • Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased cravings for food and weight gain
  • Anxiety, agitation or restlessness
  • Slowed thinking, speaking or body movements
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or self-blame
  • Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions and remembering things
  • Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts or suicide
  • Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches

From the Mayo Clinic

Having the opportunity to talk free of worry about being criticized is a primary benefit of talk therapy. In addition, I am able to work collaboratively to develop strategies to navigate current episodes of worry and sadness. 

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