Reading School District to launch School Psychologist Intern Program

The Reading School District has launched its School Psychologist Intern Program, approved by the Board of Directors in January 2024 and scheduled to begin in the 2024-25 school year.

The year-long, paid internship program offers tailored training experiences for graduate students that is designed to meet the Pennsylvania Department of Education and National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) certification requirements, including a minimum of 1,200 hours of supervised training.

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In Pennsylvania, certified School Psychologists provide consultation, support, and direct assessment of academic achievement and behavioral health within the school environment. They are responsible for conducting psychological, academic, and behavioral assessments in the diagnosis and identification of diverse learners and their needs. They serve as integral members of the school team to support a safe and supportive learning environment that promotes equity, access, and belonging for all students; promotes and provides behavioral and mental health services; and coordinates care with community and private agencies.

Interns will receive responsive training to address the specific needs of the District’s diverse population, actively participate in weekly supervision sessions, and engage in a variety of essential functions, such as conducting initial evaluations, administering assessments, providing counseling services, and collaborating with parents and team members to develop intervention plans and individualized educational programs. Interns will have the opportunity to work alongside two doctoral level, licensed psychologists currently on staff with the District.

“We are thrilled to offer aspiring school psychologists the opportunity to gain hands-on experience within our district,” said Dr. Jennifer Murray, RSD Superintendent. “Through this internship, interns will receive comprehensive training in a dynamic environment while contributing to the educational success of our students.”

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Dr. Charishma Aviles, internship site supervisor, shared her enthusiasm for the program along with her personal experiences.

“I started my career at Reading School District as a full-time employee while simultaneously completing predoctoral internship requirements under the supervision of my consistent collaborator and team co-chair, Dr. Jessie Kessler,” shared Aviles. “Through my time as an intern and beyond, I have learned that RSD is a wonderful place to work and really make a difference, and I am hopeful that this program will allow our prospective interns to have the same transformative experience.”

This program addresses the nationwide shortage of school psychologists, offering growth opportunities for aspiring professionals. Unlike traditional models, RSD’s program offers a customizable experience tailored to interns’ educational institution requirements to foster meaningful relationships between RSD and local training institutions, enriching the intern’s learning experience while benefiting the community at large.

Selected interns will receive a minimum stipend of $15,000 over one academic year, with health and welfare benefits available. Additional funding through the state may also be available.

The ultimate goal of the School Psychologist Intern Program is to create a pipeline of skilled school psychologists while enhancing the quality of educational services provided to students within the Reading School District.

Applications for prospective interns are now open on under ‘Student Support Services.’ Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis.

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