Educational Psychology Service helpline for parents and carers

If you're concerned about how your child is coping during coronavirus and you live in the Dorset Council area, you can request a 30 minute consultation with one of our educational psychologists.

Consultations are available weekly.

Calls are confidential unless there's a risk of harm to you, your child or someone else. 

Call 01258 474036 to ask for an appointment.

Our outcomes

We want adults in schools and other settings to meet the special educational needs (SEN) of all their pupils. To do this, we make sure they have the right skills, capacity and confidence. 

We aim to help children, young people and adults around them to be able to:

  • identify effective solutions for their particular situation and setting
  • put the identified solutions in place

How we work 

We build on the work that has taken place as part of the graduated process for SEN within the school and other inclusion services. 

Every Dorset local authority school and academy has a named educational psychologist (EP).

We use a consultation model that focuses on working together to:

  • agree clear outcomes and targets to address raised issues
  • plan actions to achieve our outcomes
  • review progress

Within the consultation model we might also:

  • work with a child to clarify their needs and explore their views 
  • carry out observations in a school or setting to explore what works well for a child or group of children
  • observe what might present difficulties to pupils in school and other settings 
  • support staff to develop activities for groups of children within a school
  • provide support to develop systems within a school 

We also support school communities to cope with sad or traumatic events. 

All Dorset EPs are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). We must adhere to HCPC professional standards and requirements for continuing professional development. 

Training and development

We offer a range of training and development opportunities for staff working with pupils. This includes:

  • training that focuses on particular categories of need
  • training that develops professional practice such as mediation skills
  • staff development support such as specialist supervision or coaching
  • training around meeting the needs of children and young people

How to access the educational psychologist service 

Parents and carers

You can talk to the special educational needs coordinator (SENCO) at your child's school. If your child's needs are complex, the SENCO can talk to you about the possibility of involving an EP. 

Independent schools, local authority schools or academies from another area and other organisations

Contact one of our senior educational psychologists:

Senior educational psychologist for Chesil

Name: Pamela Melville
Tel: 01305228305
Full contact details

Senior educational psychologist for Dorchester

Name: Alison Pinks
Tel: 01305 224220
Full contact details

Senior educational psychologist for North Dorset

Name: Deborah Gill
Tel: 01305228321
Full contact details

Senior educational psychologist for Purbeck

Name: Anna Ridley
Tel: 01929557000
Full contact details

Senior educational psychologist for West Dorset

Name: Petrina Tipping
Tel: 01305 228313
Full contact details

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