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Educational Psychology

Volume 669: debated on Tuesday 1 February 2005

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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Education and Skills
(Lord Filkin)

My right honourable friend the Minister for Children (Margaret Hodge) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.The department has facilitated discussions involving a range of partners, including the Local Government Association, on possible ways of streamlining the entry training route for educational psychologists (EPs). We have also commissioned two consultancy reports. The discussions to date have been positive but the expensive changes to the training route for EPs proposed do not provide a viable solution in present circumstances. The wider context for the work of EPs has also changed considerably over the past year.We need to work with stakeholders to clarify future demand and to assess how that demand can best he met. We therefore propose to commission a fundamental review of the functions of EPs in the context of wider discussions on children's workforce issues.Building on the report of the Educational Psychology Working Group published in 2000, we envisage the review will consider the key functions of EPs in the changing landscape of children's services, identifying the value they add through their particular, distinctive contribution, advise on linkages with other groups and consider implications for training and development within existing resources.Precise terms of reference for the review will be agreed with the local authority employers' side and we expect the bulk of the work to be completed in 2005.