Clinical psychologists have trained to develop an understanding of how people’s minds, abilities and behaviours develop.

 They are usually employed by the health authority and may work alone or as part of the child guidance team. They can help schools by observing and assessing children with emotional and behavioural difficulties, diagnosing conditions such as autistic spectrum disorder and giving suggestions for managing behaviour within school. They also work together with the child and family to help with any developmental, emotional and behavioural problems.

A referral is usually only made directly to a clinical psychologist by a child’s GP. A school will need to discuss with the educational psychologist first any child they feel might benefit from working with the clinical psychologist.