Steps Child and Family Psychology

Child and Family Psychology

Psychological observation, assessment, diagnosis, advice, guidance



Our work includes

  • Individual classroom and break time observation of behaviour. Behaviour occurs in a context and it is important to remember that in order to effect behavioural change, the context may need to change.
  • Psychometric Assessment of learning potential; this will initially include examination of verbal and non verbal skills, speed of information processing and memory.
  • Assessment of achievements in Literacy and Numeracy and consideration of whether or not achievements are in line with ability. An unexpected discrepancy between ability and achievement may result in a diagnosis of a specific learning difficulty.
  • Diagnosis arises out of observation and assessment and informs intervention and provision. Diagnosis may include General Learning Difficulties, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Dyscalculia, Giftedness and Low Self Esteem. Where the possibility of a Language Disorder, an Autistic Spectrum Disorder or Aspergers Syndrome is raised, the need for additional assessment by other health professionals may be advised.
  • Preparation of professional reports including Independent Psychological Advice, Access Arrangement Reports and reports for students in further education.
  • Support for parents in respect of the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice: 0 to 25 years (January 2015) outlining Local Authority responsibilities and parental rights.
  • Acting as an Expert Witness at SENDIST (Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal) in cases where parents challenge the Local Authority over a child's Draft Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
  • Attendance at a child's Special Educational Needs Annual Review in order to provide independent information and advice.
  • Consultation with parents and teachers in order to facilitate problem solving and seek solutions.
  • Individual therapy with children, young people, parents and families. Our Psychologists are trained in a number of therapeutic approaches and they will assess the most appropriate approach to use.


An example of how we work:

  • An initial appointment will generally be in our office but may be in your home or your child's school if this is preferable.
  • The purpose of the initial appointment will be to identify concerns, consider the nature of the work required and outline costs.
  • In the majority of cases, individual interview with a child or young person will follow. A letter will be sent to the child or young person prior to the first appointment explaining who we are and what to expect of the appointment. Work will be undertaken in a context where the child or young person feels most comfortable and may be followed by work in the context in which the concerns are most prevalent.
  • In cases where concerns are associated with school, a school visit will be arranged in order to speak with key members of staff and where appropriate to carry out some observation.
  • On completion of work we provide a professional report which details your concerns and our own findings and if appropriate, we make a diagnosis. Individually tailored recommendations will be provided at the end of the report and will be prescriptive and achievable.


The outcome of our work may include:

  • Advice to teachers about appropriate teaching methods and resources, target setting, and monitoring and evaluation arrangements.
  • Advice to teachers about the content of a child's Individual Education Plan (IEP).
  • Advice to parents and teachers about behaviour management, including anger management, challenging behaviour and socially isolated and withdrawn behaviour. Advice may also be about promotion of friendships and raising self esteem.
  • Support for parents in their request to the Local Authority to undertake Statutory Assessment of their child's Special Educational Needs.
  • Individual, Sibling and/or Family Therapy whereby families are encouraged, facilitated and empowered to support and value each other.



When you initially contact us about concerns and costs, we advise about our hourly rate but because each piece of work is unique, we do not quote a fixed fee until we have detailed information from you. In our experience this is a fairer method of working and ensures that all work that is undertaken is agreed beforehand.

In order to gather detailed information we usually advise that you make an initial consultation appointment with us at the end of which, the number of hours likely to be required for the work is estimated and a fee quoted.

Agreement about costs is indicated through the joint signing of a Terms and Conditions form.

Latest News

Messages from Clients. Ruth has recently received a nice message from a client who she has guided through the all the ups and downs of the Tribunal process. Click here to view this and other messages she has received.

In February "Varsity", Cambridge University's student newspaper highlighted the university's outdated system for students requiring Access ArrangementsClick here for more information

An increase in numbers of Access Arrangements has caused unforeseen complications. Click here for further information

This year's Access Arrangements Guidelines for GCSE and A level examinations are available online. Click here for more information

We now have a brochure which describes the services that STEPS Psychology offers.  If you want us to send you a copy in the post you can request one here. Or, you can download it yourself here.

Older News 

To view older news about STEPS Psychology. Click here for older news items


Getting in touch with STEPS

If you have any questions about the help and advice STEPS offer, we would be pleased to hear from you.

To make an enquiry please contact us by one of the following methods:

By phone:

01434 605486

Our normal offices hours are between 10.00am and 6.00pm, Monday to Thursday (closed Bank Holidays).

Please note: we may be busy and unable to take your call, in which case an answer phone service will take any message you would like to leave.

Or, by email: