Empowering Children, Educators, and Families

Kansas Association of School Psychologists

Summer 2021

Teresa Walters, Editor Jill Marzolf, Associate Editor

KASP Vision and Mission

KASP VISIONKASP visibly leads in promoting proactive, research-based practices and partnerships which foster the academic and psychological well-being of children, for their benefit and that of their families, schools, communities, and the profession of School Psychology.

KASP MISSION:  KASP exists to advocate for the psychological and educational well-being of Kansas children, while serving the needs of the membership and promoting school psychology as a profession.

President's Message

Happy new school year Kansas School Psych family! 

I hope you were all able to enjoy the summer and even though the break is always too short, I hope you are feeling excited and rejuvenated about the upcoming year. When we finished the year in the Spring, things were looking positive. Unfortunately, this summer brought new challenges that will likely impact this new year. Some of you may be back to feeling fearful or anxious about the unknown. Just remember, other staff, families, and especially students are probably feeling this too. Find your person or people you feel comfortable sharing with and also try to be that person for those around you who might be experiencing those same emotions.  

Your incredible KASP board has continued to work throughout the summer on specific priorities such as strategic planning and the Fall conference. Registration will be open soon so please be watching for those notifications. And remember, joining KASP is the best way to get the lowest rate. We are excited to bring you another amazing Virtual conference with great speakers and a wide variety of break-out sessions so watch for details coming soon! So much planning goes on behind the scenes to bring this conference to our membership so please join us to STOP, COLLABORATE, and LISTEN October 14th and 15th!  On this note, we are seeking an organized and driven person to fill the Convention Chair seat. Our current chair will begin working with this person immediately to train them on conference planning. Remember, this is a paid position. You should have received an e-mail with the link to apply. This is a great way to become more involved in KASP. 

We are also excited to partner with Greenbush for the first ever Early Career School Psychologist Cadre and School Psychologist Forum. If your district or coop is a member of Greenbush, these are free to you for the year. If not, there will be a small fee to participate. The ECSP Cadre is designed for interns and psychs in their first few years of practice. This group met in person this month but you can still enroll before the September meeting. There will be no new enrollment after September. Meetings will be monthly and your commitment is for the entire year. The school psych forum is for experienced school psychs and will also meet monthly but you do not need to commit to the entire year. You can attend the monthly sessions which interest you. Please see the fliers on the web-site to sign up, learn more about these, or reach out with questions. Topics for these monthly forums will be coming out shortly. Tommie Gonsalez and her team have worked hard to bring this resource to all school psychologists in the state. 

KASP is also working with Dr. Jim Persinger to bring more PREPaRE trainings to you this year and we are sponsoring a limited number of seats that will be paid for on a first come, first served basis. Once KASP member slots are filled, you can still participate in these trainings at your own cost or paid for by your district or COOP as long as there are openings. This is such a great opportunity to provide NASP sponsored crisis training to more of our members. Contact me directly or watch the web-site for more information on trainings throughout the year. 

Your work is hard but hopefully you feel equipped to advocate for students and support staff in ways that will help them better serve our students. Have a great year and we are looking forward to connecting with everyone in October. As always, please reach out via e-mail if you have specific questions or items you would like the board to address. 


Stacey Moddie, EdS


Stacey Moddie, Ed.S

KASP President


 We send updates and information  via social media. This is also a great space for collaboration!

Board News and Announcements

Board Minute Summary by Angie Howard, Secretary

Members of the KASP Executive Board convened in Overland Park, Kansas on Saturday, August 7, 2021.  The Board reviewed and approved the minutes from the prior board meeting and heard updates from each of the board members.  The President and President Elect gave update regarding the PREPaRE Initiative, School Psychologist Forum, Early Career School Psychologist Cadre, and membership survey development.  Resignation of Communications Director and Conference Chair were discussed and plans were made to add these open positions to the Ballot at the Fall 2021 KASP Convention.  Two motions were approved by the board to modify language related to KASP reimbursement for board member travel, while one was tabled for further discussion.  The Board discussed and worked to finalize details regarding the upcoming Virtual Fall 2021 Conference.  Upcoming Board Elections and Fall 2021 Convention award nominations were discussed and a plan for seeking nominations was developed. Board Members discussed and approved a plan to modify the KASP website to reflect a commitment to the NASP 2020 Practice Model and to create increased visibility/transparency of KASP Strategic Plan, goals and alignment with NASP aligned position statements on the website.  The board reviewed progress on strategic plan development, indicated preferences for which goals to help address in the coming years, and identified continued need for additional participation from membership to serve on committees in order to most effectively and efficiently reach the goals outlined by the organization.  Feedback is forthcoming from the NASP GPR Consultants at which time the board will utilize feedback to finalize the strategic plan and action steps toward reaching the goals of the organization.  

Timely Events

Check out available forums for continued professional development!

Click on the links to find some great virtual professional development opportunities. Greenbush has partnered with KASP to provide the Early Career School Psychologist Cadre and the School Psychologist Forum

PREPaRE Workshops

KASP is also working with Dr. Jim Persinger to bring more PREPaRE trainings to you this year and we are sponsoring a limited number of seats that will be paid for on a first come, first served basis. Once KASP member slots are filled, you can still participate in these trainings at your own cost or paid for by your district or COOP as long as there are openings. Contact Stacie Moddie directly or watch the web-site for more information on trainings throughout the year. 

Mental Health Crisis Interventions: Responding to an Acute Traumatic Stressor in Schools

    • October 21-22, 2021, Greenbush - 1104 E. 1000 Road Lawrence, KS 66047 (Lawrence Virtual School)
    • February 16-17, 2022, Greenbush - 947 W 47 Highway, Girard, KS 66743 (Greenbush Education Service Center)

Timely Topics

Enter your Award nominations by Sept. 15!

We need submissions to honor our fellow school psychologists and colleagues. Visit Awards & Nominations for more information.

Come join our board, we have many great positions available!

Joining our board is a great way to network, advocate for our position at the state level, and have direct input into the board's strategic planning. 

Please read through each position and description and submit your name to one that you would be interested in.  

  • Convention Chair: the responsibility of the Convention Chairperson takes the lead along with the KASP leadership in preparing for and carrying out large meetings and conferences. Activities include investigating and selecting meeting sites, hotels, food service, audio-visual needs, speakers, vendors, and presenters.  To this end, the Convention Chairperson has the authority to sign contracts. Additionally, the convention chairperson assists with preparing and distributing registrations.  This position is a Non-voting member and an appointed position by the President and President Elect.  This is a contracted paid position by the board. The convention chair is intended to be a long-term engagement and does not have a capped year of commitment.  Please see this link for further details about this position.  Apply for the Convention Chair here. We need this position filled as soon as possible!
  • Communications: The Communications Directors official duties are to maintain and develop membership in the Association and communicate announcements and noteworthy items about individuals and activities to the media. Seek nominations and procure awards for fall conference.  This position is a elected position and is a voting member to board decisions. This  position also has a two year term. If you are curious, please fill this out. 
  • Associate Editor: The primary function of the Associate Editor is to publish a minimum of four newsletters (The Kansas School Psychologist) per year along side the Editor. They shall coordinate any other publications as determined by the Board. This is a two-year position with election to the Associate Editor position for the first year. The Associate Editor will be mentored during his/her/they first year and will share in publication duties. The Associate Editor will become the Editor/Publications Chairperson for the second year of his/her/they term. This is an elected position and a voting member to board decisions. This position has a two year term. If interested fill this out. 

Anticipated closing date is 9/15/2021. 

If you have further questions, please contact Jessica Mefford at jessica.mefford@usd262.net

Advocacy Corner

Welcome to Advocacy Corner! I am Jon Smeeton and currently serve as the GPR representative to the KASP board! I am also a practicing school psychologist in Reno County. KASP is dedicated to improving advocacy efforts at the local, state and national levels in order to insure Kansas students can be successful in work, in life, and in the community. 

This space will be used to communicate with KASP membership on the important advocacy work that we are doing. WIth this initial entry, I want to introduce you to the Three A’s of Advocacy. 

Awareness: Advocacy Priorities in Kansas- KASP is in the process of developing a strategic plan that will drive the advocacy work we want to do. 

Access: Identifying Stakeholders-Building key relationships with those outside the profession in order to keep moving forward. Although, as school psychologists, we often view ourselves as solitary individuals, everyday we interact with general and special education teachers, parents, administrators and directors of special education. These connections may have a stake in making progress. 

Action: Developing Key Messages- Once key stakeholders are identified, and you have determined the best way to access them it is time to develop and support your action plan. 

Although this is a really simplified explanation, KASP is committed to developing a strategic plan and fostering relationships with other stakeholder groups. More information on our efforts will be coming soon and we will use this space to communicate with you, our members. 

Here are a couple of Bills that have been introduced in Congress. Call your Congressmen in support of these bills:

S.1811 Increasing Access to Mental Health in Schools Act

H.R. 3572 Increasing Access to Mental Health in Schools Act

This legislation would establish a grant program to increase the number of mental health professionals at low income schools by supporting partnerships between institutions of higher education and local education agencies to support teaching, training, and employment of school counselors, social workers, and psychologists. This legislation formed the basis of the Mental Health Service Professional Demonstration Grant.

S. XX Mental Health in Schools Excellence Program Act

H.R. XX Mental Health in Schools Excellence Program Act

This program is modeled after the post 9/11 Yellow Ribbon GI Bill and creates a partnership between ED and universities to create tuition grants for students (priority given to Pell recipients) who complete a training program that leads to a credential as a school mental health professional.

I look forward to hearing from KASP members and continuing to work together to ensure that ALL Kansas students have access to high-quality school mental health providers. 

A breakout session is being planned for the annual KASP convention on importance of advocacy as well as the hope and why.

Convention News

The KASP Fall Convention 2021 will be held October 14 & 15 virtually. 

Stop, Collaborate, & Listen: Embracing our Role as Mental Health Providers

The Kansas Association of School Psychologists is excited to welcome featured speakers, Dr. J. Stuart Ablon and Carmen Ziesler. Join us for two days of great professional development opportunities. 

Early Bird Deadline is September 24, 2021!

Student Section

Getting Ready for a New School Year

I hope everyone is enjoying the last couple weeks of summer before school starts back up again. Every new school year is an opportunity to reflect on the work you’ve accomplished so far and set goals for the months ahead. Below are some things that can help you prepare for new classes, practicum, and all the other responsibilities that you will take on this year.

Refine your Systems

We all have habits that serve us (and maybe some that don’t). Be intentional about establishing routines and systems that help keep you organized and prepared. Once these routines become habit, you’ll have more brainpower to focus on the big ‘to-dos’ on your list.

Here are a couple free resources that I use daily to keep me focused and motivated:

  • Pomodoro Timer – Use this timer to break your tasks into smaller chunks and stay focused for 25 minutes at a time. It’ll surprise you how much faster you can get things done with structured work and break times.
  • Anki – This is a beloved program for a reason! Anki is free to use on computers, lets you create flashcard decks, and learns what information you need to study most. It is a great tool to use when you have a lot of information to learn and is best used overtime.

Reconnect with Organizations

It may be intimidating to think about adding more to your calendar in the coming months, but many professional organizations like KASP and NASP plan fall events that give you an opportunity to learn and connect outside of your regularly scheduled classes. These can be a great change of pace and allow you to hear about issues and topics that are at the forefront of our field.

Plan for Self-Care

There is no doubt that this is a busy time of year, but your mental health is top priority. Don’t forget that you cannot fill everyone else’s bucket, if your own bucket is empty. Schedule in time every day to do something just for yourself; reading a book that isn’t a textbook, taking a walk, or playing with your pet. Giving yourself time to relax and refresh will help make you more productive and safeguard against burnout.

Find NASP self-care resources here.

Establish your Supports

Your university wants to succeed! Make sure to become familiar with the counseling and support services that your school provides (oftentimes they’re free). Additionally, schedule time to get to know your advisor and professors. They are there to help you and want to get to know you.

Set your Sights

All of us are driven individuals, but sometimes it can be helpful to get extra clear on what you want to accomplish. Brainstorming a few specific goals can help focus your energy and give you a sense of direction for the year ahead. Bonus points if you share your goals with your school advisor! They might be able to give you advice or offer resources to help you succeed.       


Opportunity to Connect

It has been difficult to connect with one another since becoming your student representative in January, but I am excited about our upcoming Fall Conference because it’ll be a chance to meet and hear from you all.

Mark your calendars for Thursday October 14th and Friday October 15th! This year’s fall conference will be virtual, which hopefully makes it easier for members from all over the state to participate. There are special student rates ($50), and a discounted early bird rate for students ($40), so be sure to check the website for registration information! In addition to the Keynote speakers and breakout room presentations, I will be hosting a student meeting where I’ll be asking for feedback from you on what programs and initiatives you would like to see KASP prioritize and what you would like to get out of your KASP membership. I’ll also be giving information about how you can get more involved with KASP and future KASP events. I’m excited to see you there!

Shannon Spadoni

KASP Student Representative

Kansas Association of School Psychologists (KASP) is approved by the National Association of School Psychologists to offer continuing education for school psychologists.  KASP maintains responsibility for the program.                                         

 KASP is a NASP approved provider of CPDs.   KASP is approved provider #1030

No person will be denied access to or full participation in any KASP program, event or activity on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, disability, or age. 

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