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Massachusetts School Psychologists Association Spring 2019 Conference: Reflection & Practice; Race, Language, & Gender

  • 10 May 2019
  • 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
  • Sheraton Framingham: 1657 Worcester Rd, Framingham, MA 01701


Registration is closed

Massachusetts School Psychologists Association Spring 2019 Conference:

Reflection & Practice; Race, Language, & Gender 

Friday May 10, 2019 

8:00-8:30 am Registration 

8:30am -4:00pm  Conference 

Sheraton Framingham: 1657 Worcester Rd, Framingham, MA 01701

Registrants will choose one morning session and one afternoon session from the following options:

1. School Psychologists and the Myth of a Post-Racial American Society: Implications for Practice, Policy, Justice, and Equity By: Dr. Charles A. Barrett 

2.  English Learners: More than just language By: Dr. Ivonne Borrero 

3. Sexual Orientation and Gender: By: Dr. Todd Savage 

1. School Psychologists and the Myth of a Post-Racial American Society: Implications for Practice, Policy, Justice, and Equity

Charles A. Barrett, PhD, NCSP


The United States continues to become an increasingly diverse and less homogenous society.  As a consequence of these demographic trends, the students, families, schools, and communities that school psychologists serve are becoming more heterogeneous, which presents extraordinary learning opportunities for developing more informed and effective clinical practices.  Although uncomfortable and unsettling for some, it is imperative that school psychologists develop an appreciation for their students’ and families’ unique histories through the lens of race. In fact, the recent addition of social justice as one of the National Association of School Psychologists’ (NASP) strategic goals underscores the importance of school psychologists infusing principles of equity into all aspects of service delivery.  Further, and consistent with Bronfenbrenner’s ecological perspective (Bronfenbrenner, 1969), school psychologists must recognize the injustices that diverse groups have been subjected to, and in some ways continue to experience, within various contexts (e.g., community and country). 

After briefly surveying the correlation between racialized experiences and negative outcomes for Indigenous American, African American, Asian American/Pacific Islander, and Hispanic American students and families, this session will offer practical implications for practice and policy to promote equity and justice.

Goals of Presentation: 

1.     Using national and local data sources, attendees will explore significant race-based inequities for school-age children including academic achievement and social, emotional, and behavioral functioning.

2.     Using a social justice framework, attendees will explore the implications for equitable school psychology practice, including prevention, intervention, and assessment.

3.     Attendees will be exposed to the central role of school psychologists as agents of systems change and influencers of necessary policy decisions that are intentionally informed by principles of justice and equity.

Charles A. Barrett, PhD, NCSP

Anchored by an unwavering commitment to equity and justice, Charles Barrett is lead school psychologist with Loudoun County Public Schools and an adjunct lecturer in the Graduate School of Education at Howard University.  Actively involved in the training and development of future psychologists, he serves as assistant director, internship supervisor, and chair of the Committee on Diversity for LCPS’ APA-Accredited Doctoral Internship in Health Service Psychology.  His current leadership positions include being a member of the Publications Committee, co-coordinator of the Bilingual Interest Group, co-chair of the African American Subcommittee, chair of the Social Justice Committee, and the Virginia Delegate to the NASP Leadership Assembly.

        2. English Learners: More than just language 

The population of English Learners has consistently increased in Massachusetts over the last decade. School Psychologist are expected to understand and manage multi-layered needs of these students in areas such as culture, language acquisition, instruction, and assessment for Special Education services. New laws also impact the work of the School Psychologist with this population. Participants will expand their knowledge in each of these areas with the focus on understanding basic guidelines to implement at their own settings. 


1. To explore the cultural and linguistic barriers school psychologist face when working with English Learners.

2. To understand alternative instructional tools and interventions that may be offered to EL before they are referred to special education at the Tier 1 and 2 level. 

3. To expand intervention tool boxes to work with ELs. 

4. To understand how language access impacts assessment and learning of this population. 

Ivonne Borrero, Psy.D, NCSP

Dr. Ivonne Borrero, is a Bilingual (Spanish-English) School Psychologist with vast experience in working with bilingual students in Puerto Rico and Massachusetts. She has worked as a bilingual school psychologist in Boston and Newton Public Schools for the past 13 years. During her time in Newton she developed protocols and programs for ELLs/SWD. She has supervised graduate level students from Northeastern, Tufts, and other state institutions. For two and a half years she supervised English Language Learners/ Students with Disabilities for the Boston Public Schools as a member of the Instructional Team of the office of English Language Learners and the ELD/SWD Task force of the school committee. Currently, Dr. Borrero is the program director of the Behavioral Services Department at the Boston Public Schools where she directly supports and supervises school psychologist sand pupil adjustment counselors. She is an active member of the American Psychologist Association and the Massachusetts School Psychologist Association. 

3. Understanding and Supporting Gender and Sexual Diversity in Schools

Todd A. Savage, Ph.D., NCSP

The purpose of this section is to provide participants with increased awareness and knowledge about sexual and gender diversity as they pertains to schools; family matters and raising gender diverse children and navigating the education system in this regard will also be presented. Finally, specific tools and strategies participants can use to support sexual and gender diverse students will also be highlighted. Learning will be supported through direct instruction, large and small group work, and resources that can be employed to facilitate these processes. 


1. To enhance participants' awareness of sexual and gender diversity matters in schools from multiple perspectives. 

2. To assist participants in constructing and/ or augmenting their knowledge bases related to sexual and gender diversity in schools. 

3. To highlight tools and strategies participants can employ to support students and to improve school commutes as they pertain to sexual and gender diversity. 

Todd A. Savage, Ph.D., NCSP

Todd is a professor in the school psychology program at the Univserosty of Wisconsin-River Falls; he is also the former president of the National Association of School Psychologists. Dr. Savage's scholarly research interest include school safety and crisis prevention, preparedness, and intervention, suicide and behavioral threat risk assessment and management, culturally responsive practice; social justice; LGBTQ+ student issues, having devoted the past five years of his work to gender diversity. 

Payment Information:

After the registration is complete, purchase orders can be emailed in PDF format to Julie Herlihy at 

Also, for those wishing to pay by purchase order, please complete registration, print the invoice, and mail invoice and district purchase order PRIOR to the event to:

Julie Herlihy

48 Carruth St. Unit 2

Dorchester, MA 02124



For general inquiries, please contact


Massachusetts School Psychologists Association (MSPA)
1 Wells Avenue,  Suite 007.
Newton, MA 02459

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