Congratulations to North Colonie School Psychologist, Kathy Leavens, who is being recognized as the New York State Association of School Psychologists (NYSAP) “Chapter J” School Psychologist of the Year. Chapter J represents Albany, Schenectady, Rensselaer, Columbia, and Schoharie counties, and includes more than 40 school districts. The award recognizes excellence in the provision of school psychological services.
“Kathy was selected based on her wealth of knowledge and her exceptional commitment to the field of school psychology,” said Moira Mascelli, the NYASP Chapter J representative. “Kathy has over 30 years of experience in the North Colonie School District, has earned the respect of her colleagues and administrators, and is viewed as a valuable resource by those that work with her. She is a fierce advocate for children and their families and works tirelessly to get students what they need to be successful in school.”
Leavens has worked as a psychologist in North Colonie for 34 years at many schools within the district, including Shaker Junior High, Loudonville, St. Ambrose, Latham Ridge, Blue Creek, and currently, at Loudonville, St. Pius, and St. Gregory’s. The services she provides on a daily basis are broad, from individual and group counseling, to crisis intervention, to setting up behavioral plans for students with teachers. But Leavens says one of her proudest accomplishments is her role as an intern supervisor.
“I have grown so much personally and professionally from the supervision experience,” she said. “It is a joy to mentor interns and share my experiences and expertise, and to know that I have been a part of their growth and ultimate successes as practitioners.”
Leavens says when supervising, one really needs to know the field of school psychology and be able to explain both content and a rationale for decisions that are made. She says that role has led her to consistently sharpen and maintain her skills, as well as keep current with new developments in the field. In addition, Leavens continues to remain a nationally certified psychologist, the equivalent of a board certified teacher.
“I am touched and honored to be nominated,” said Leavens. “This is an award given by school psychologists to school psychologists; they are people who really know what your role is supposed to be in schools. It’s a big compliment.”
Category: District News