Dr Louise Carr is an experienced EP who completed her doctoral training in 2012 via the University of Nottingham. Her doctoral thesis was an evaluation of a cognitive behavioural therapy-based intervention aimed at reducing anxiety in learners in Key Stages 1, 2 and 3. Louise worked for Telford & Wrekin LA for 10 years, from Year 2 of EP training and continuing post-qualification as an Educational Psychologist; she is excited to now be joining the EPE team from September 2019.
While having a wealth of experience of all kinds of special educational needs and barriers to learning and inclusion, Louise is particularly passionate about the needs of learners with autism spectrum conditions and how schools, as well as their families, can be best helped to understand, support and celebrate neurodiversity. Prior to her EP training, Louise worked for several years in a residential school for learners with complex autism and significant learning and emotional wellbeing needs, both as a care worker and as a member of the school's psychology team alongside education staff. This gave her invaluable experience in understanding the challenges facing autistic learners in their home, school and community environments. At Telford & Wrekin LA, Louise contributed to the authority's Strategic Working Group on autism and delivered DfE-backed Autism Education Trust training to educational staff in schools and settings across the borough. Louise is also an ELSA trainer (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants), and has trained and supervised several cohorts of ELSAs to support emotional health and wellbeing in Telford & Wrekin schools. Louise is an experienced supervisor of EP doctoral trainees at all three stages of training.
Away from work, music plays a huge role in Louise's life - she is a member of two choirs, and regularly enjoys going to live concerts and shows, particularly orchestral music from both the traditional classical and film music genres. Louise is another EPE team member who holds National Trust membership, and enjoys scrambling around castles and other historic buildings. More recently, Louise has been striving to increase her physical fitness and wellbeing, and has taken up running (very slowly!). Her biggest challenge to date is the 2019 Great North Run half-marathon.
Lucy Vines is a Senior Play Therapist and is registered with the British Association of Play Therapists and Play Therapy UK.
Lucy started her career with children, young people and families early on and completed a degree at Derby University in Early Childhood Studies in 2002. On completing her dissertation on the use of Arts Therapies with troubled children she began to explore the world of Play Therapy.
After taking a year out teaching in Japan she returned to the UK on the Trans Siberian Railway, which was an adventure. Lucy had then gained a place at Roehampton University in London to study Play Therapy full time. Following this she returned to the West Midlands and began practice as a play therapist locally and within Birmingham schools.
In 2016 Lucy completed her Foundation Level in Family Therapy and Systemic Practice and hopes to complete the intermediate level in the future. Lucy has also recently been accepted to complete a clinical supervision course in November 2018 and will be hoping to support other local play therapists and people working with children and young people.
When not working Lucy enjoys time with friends and family and making use of the beautiful local countryside, walking and antique hunting.
Sarah Hodgkins is an excellent and experienced Occupational Therapist, working as an independent practitioner in the field of mental health in a variety of settings. She has a Bachelor in Heath Science from the College of Ripon & York St John.
Since qualifying, Sarah has worked for 22 years in the NHS, with clinical experience working with children and adolescents in a variety of settings including Looked After Children. Sarah also works with adults with acute and enduring (community) mental health difficulties, adults with learning disabilities, and with elderly mentally ill patients.
Sarah specialises in the treatment & assessment of children, adolescents and adults with a wide range of conditions including anxiety, phobias, food refusal, social skills & depression, and is experienced in approaches & treatment methods including Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Family (Systematic) Therapy, sensory integration and behavioural management techniques. Sarah also has extensive experience planning & developing a wide range of group sessions, presentations and training programmes.
Outside of this, Sarah is also a qualified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Reiki Master, hypnobirthing teacher, BabyCalm and ToddlerCalm teacher, Relax Kids Coach & Mindfulness Meditation teacher. She has lectured extensively to undergraduate OT students at Coventry University and has written a book on a groupwork approach for self-harm
Dr Amy Sweet is an experienced EP who completed her doctoral training in 2011. She has worked for both Wolverhampton and Warwickshire LAs before setting up in independent practice and joining the EPE team as an Associate EP in September 2017.
Amy is passionate about supporting good mental health and wellbeing and she held a specialist senior role in Warwickshire in the area of SEMH. Amy worked collaboratively with schools to support capacity building in relation to mental health and behaviour and this included training, developing whole school and targeted provision and nurture group development.
Amy worked closely with CAMHS and enjoyed co-delivering therapeutic groups with clinical psychology colleagues. Amy extended this work to deliver therapeutic groups collaboratively with school staff in a range of mainstream and specialist settings. She is an acknowledged contributor the the recently published national guidelines for professionals working therapeutically in schools.
In her personal life, Amy enjoys spending time with her family, travelling, visiting new places and making good use of her national trust membership!
Anthony Atwell is an experienced Educational Psychologist who worked for Sandwell LA for many years before moving into independent practice in 2020.
He is particularly interested in meaningfully eliciting the experiential voice of the child and has a specialism is in the area of Critical Incident Support for schools.
Dr Jane Yeomans is an experienced Educational Psychologist
After qualifying as a teacher in the late 1970s, she worked in a number of Primary, Nursery and Special Schools in Birmingham. Jane held a range of posts during her teaching career: music, RE, assessment, SENCo and Acting Deputy Head teacher. During her time in teaching, Jane studied part time to gain a Diploma is Professional Studies in Education (Special Education) and a Master’s degree in Educational and Child Psychology. She was awarded the Annie Deakin prize for the best 1992 MEd dissertation.
Jane trained as an Educational Psychologist in 1992-3 at the University of Birmingham, and has worked for over 20 years in several Local Authority services in the West Midlands. She was awarded her PhD in 1998, for research into reading with nursery aged children. Jane retired from full time Local Authority work in 2011 but continues to do Associate work for part of her week.
In 2004, Jane was seconded part time to the University of Birmingham professional training course in Educational Psychology as an Academic and Professional tutor. She carried out this role until 2013, and retains an Honorary Clinical Lecturer role. She continues to deliver teaching to three Educational Psychology training courses (Birmingham, Nottingham and Manchester) and is an external examiner for the UCL Educational Psychology post qualification CPD doctorate.
As well as delivering generic Educational Psychology services, Jane has a particular interest in Dynamic Assessment (DA), an interactive method of assessment that examines the processes of learning (sometimes called thinking skills). She is an accredited practitioner of Dynamic Assessment, Instrumental Enrichment (a teaching programme that follows up DA) and Bright Start (a cognitive curriculum for young children).
In addition to the associate work she undertakes for EPE, Jane works as an on-line tutor for Real Group (UK) Ltd - an e-learning and psychology consultancy company. Jane is also the deputy programme leader of Real Training’s Masters programme. For more information about Real Group see their website www.realgroup.co.uk.
Jane is the co author of two psychology textbooks. She is also co author of the ENABLE Plus reading programme, which is published by Imaginative Minds and which is listed in the Greg Brooks publication ‘What work for pupils with literacy difficulties’ as being an effective intervention for failing readers.
Jane is a member of the British Psychological Society (BPS) Committee on Test Standards. She is on the Register of Applied Psychology Practice Supervisors (RAPPS) and the Register of Qualifications in Test Use (RQTU).
Becky Wheeler is an experienced Educational Psychologist. She completed her BSc in Psychology at the University of Sunderland in 1997 and her PGCE at the University of Leicester in 2000. She went on to work as a teacher and SENCO for before completing her MSc in Educational Psychology in 2003 and working as an Educational Psychologist for Walsall Council.
Becky continues to undertake LA work for Walsall Council and Telford & Wrekin Council as well as working in independent practice in London and for ourselves. She has a keen interest in developmental trauma, attachment and care needs.
When she is not working Becky enjoys spending time with family and friends.
Claire Maney is an Assistant Educational Psychologist.
She completed her BSc (Hons) in Psychology and Education Studies and her PGCE in Primary Education at the University of Roehampton. She went on to teach in London, Birmingham and Dudley before taking up the post of Assistant EP with EPE in January 2019. she has recently completed training in Drawing & Talking and can now offer this intervention in schools.
Claire's hobbies include music, netball, running and thrill seeking activities like indoor skydiving and zorbing. She has also completed a Tough Mudder!
Tom Rees qualified as an Educational Psychologist in 1999 from the Institute of Education, London. Before that he worked as a teacher in mainstream and special education, also gaining an MA degree in Child Psychology from Nottingham University.
At Nottingham Tom researched the impact of a sandplay therapy intervention on pre-school children and his Educational Psychology thesis examined systemic factors in the application of the TEACCH approach for young people with ASD within and across one local authority.
Tom has a range and depth of experience in his work, having worked in local authority maingrade and senior Educational Psychologist posts. He has developed his interest throughout his career in effective assessment and intervention for children with a wide range of needs. He also has expansive knowledge of evidence-based approaches to meet the social, emotional and health needs of young people, parents/carers and school staff. Tom also enjoys supporting the professional development of other Educational Psychologists and is part of an established supervision support group for colleagues in independent practice.
Tom is also currently training to be a psychotherapist with the Human Givens Institute (HGI), having passed the Diploma (HG Dip.P Trainee). He values the holistic, scientific and practical nature of this training, which is also highly relevant to his educational psychology work at the individual and organisational levels.
Outside work Tom enjoys family life. He has a lifelong interest in theatre acting, having taken many lead and supporting roles in a wide variety of plays.
Dr Wendy Sillitoe is an experienced EP who completed her doctoral training at the University in 2011. She initially worked for Dudley LA before moving south and joining West Berkshire EPS. Whilst working there she undertook CPD to become an accredited instructor of Mental Health First Aid and it is in this role that she has undertaken work for EPE as an Associate EP.
When she is not working Wendy enjoys spending time with her husband Andrew, daughter Holly and the rest of her family and friends.
Dr Heather Altinok-Ball is an experienced Educational Psychologist who completed her doctoral training at the University of Birmingham in 2011 and has worked for a local authority since this time. Heather is new to our team having just returned from maternity leave after the birth of her first child.
During her training, Heather developed a specific interest in neuropsychology and supporting children who have acquired a brain injury through either an internal mechanism such as an infection or stroke or an external mechanism such as a road traffic accident or fall. Heather went on to complete further research in this area and has published in Educational Psychology in Practice and Support for Learning.
Heather now specialises in neuro-rehabilitation through her work as a Senior Associate with Recolo UK Ltd. Heather is passionate about supporting schools to recognise the hidden needs of children who have had a brain injury and supporting those individuals around the young person through a systemic model of support.
Heather has also worked extensively with schools and local prison services to support children affected by parental imprisonment and has developed and delivered training to schools around the key issues faced by children and their families when a family member goes to prison. Heather is also a recognised contributing author to a handbook published by Barnardos titled ‘Children affected by the imprisonment of a family member: A handbook for schools developing good practice’.
In her home life, Heather loves to spend time with her family and walking with her dog. Heather enjoys discovering new brunch delights and travelling when she can although this is much bigger undertaking now she has an emerging toddler!
Anna Baker-Rice is an Assistant Educational Psychologist and trained Yoga Teacher.
Anna graduated from Aston University, Birmingham in 2007 with a BSc (Hons) in Human Psychology. Having enjoyed this course immensely, she was keen to quickly gain experience in practical work with children and young people. Commencing training with the Careers Service soon after, she qualified in 2009 and has extensive experience in working with children with learning difficulties and disabilities, local secondary schools, FE providers, specialist settings and liaising with a wide range of other professionals and support services. Anna has experience of working both in the public and private sectors.
During her first degree, Anna also worked as an Assistant Clinical Psychologist within South Birmingham PCT, working in anxiety management clinics and delivering CBT programs.
Anna is one of the former members of EPE having started with us an Assistant 9 months after the company was establsied and is a huge asset to the team.
In her spare time (which is not much as a mum to 3 small children), Anna enjoys reading, spending time with family and friends, practicing her yoga and going for lots of walks with her dog Rupert the Pug!
Victoria Roberts is an Assistant Educational Psychologist.
Victoria originally trained as a nurse, graduating from the University of Wales, College of Medicine in 2002 with a BN (hons). She worked in Critical Care and Accident and Emergency before leaving the profession in 2008 to spend more time with her young family.
Once her two young daughters were both at school, Victoria began seeking employment once again and began working as a teaching assistant. She has worked in primary and secondary schools across Worcestershire and in the Dudley borough. Her roles have typically involved supporting children and young people with SEND, both in and out of the classroom. This shift in career quickly led to an overwhelming passion to support children and young people achieve their potential in education and the subsequent drive to become an Educational Psychologist.
In 2014, Victoria completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Education: Learning and Teaching, specifically studying the programme: Understanding and Managing Children with SEBD. She then went on to achieve her Masters in Psychology with Manchester University, graduating in 2016 with Distinction. Following her studies, Victoria was lucky enough to work with Dr Kim Golding as an assistant psychologist on her pilot study ‘Foundations of Attachment’. This was a very valuable experience, leading to a greater understanding of attachment and childhood trauma.
In the last year, Victoria has worked as an associate assistant with EPE and is now very excited to be working for them full time. As part of her CPD she will be undertaken a qualification in DDP & PACE with a view to EPE being able to offer training and workshops for parents / carers and schools.
When not at work, Victoria enjoys spending time with her family, including 3 dogs. She is a bit of a foodie and loves eating out and cooking. She has also recently taken up playing the saxophone, which is currently not quite as good as her cooking!
Erin Rodger is an Assistant Educational Psychologist.
She completed her BSc (Hons) in Psychology at the University of Surrey, which included a professional training year. During this year, she worked as a Research Assistant with the multi-agency London Down Syndrome Consortium at the University College London. This work involved carrying out cognitive assessments with adults with Down syndrome to investigate the link between Down syndrome and Alzheimer’s disease. She also worked as an Honorary Assistant Psychologist at Great Ormond Street Hospital in the Child and Adolescent Mental Health team.
After her studies, Erin went on to work at a mainstream primary school in Northampton for two years. Here she worked as a 1:1 Learning Support Assistant, for a child with cerebral palsy, and a Learning Mentor. She also worked part time as a Support Worker at a charity funded organisation that houses and supports young people (aged 16-24) and their families.
She then went on to work as an Assistant Psychologist for an independent psychology service in London for one year. In this year she observed the Educational Psychologist’s assessments and participated in consultations with school staff and families. Her work with children included aspects of cognitive behavioural therapy, solution focused brief therapy and personal construct psychology. She also trained staff in areas including the Zones of Regulation, attachment and working memory.
She is particularly interested in attachment, childhood trauma and systemic work within schools and communities and believes passionately in the power of relationships.
Outside of work, Erin enjoys spending quality time with family and friends, playing the keyboard, going to gym classes and exploring new places. She is also a fully qualified ballet teacher with the NATD and so enjoys anything related to dance and musicals!
Sian Cox is a Specialist Teaching Assistant who has worked with EPE since 2016.
She initially trained as an NNEB and has over 17 years’ experience in working with children and young people within the Dudley Borough, successfully helping them to overcome significant learning needs and social, emotional and behavioural barriers. Sian has worked in a range of settings including nurseries, primary schools and behaviour support units. The majority of her experience was gained in a Dudley Pupil Referral Unit, supporting Primary and later Secondary children.
Having gained a wealth of experience in her previous roles, Sian is currently working in schools to support staff to implement recommendations provided following psychological assessments. She is also delivering 1:1 interventions for anger and anxiety management as well as play-based intervention sessions.
As part of ongoing CPD, Sian is currently completing her Therapeutic Play Skills Practitioner Certificate with PTUK.
Sian is a mum to two young children and in her spare time she loves to laugh lots and enjoy quality family time. She also loves reading, dancing, eating out, camping, BBQ’s and being outdoors...weather permitting!
Debbie Sinclair obtained her BSc in Psychology from the University of Wales, Cardiff in 2001.
She has since completed training as a Play Therapist and Counsellor and she works for EPE as an Associate Mental Health Practitioner offering assessments, individual child therapy and parenting support.
Louise Parker is an experienced Assistant Educational Psychologist. Having completed her BSc in Psychology at the University of Derby in 2010 she initially spent time working in social care and mental health settings before spending 5 years working as a teacher and tutor. She has spent the last 2 years working as an Assistant Educational Psychologist for Wolverhampton City Council during which time she completed Educational Psychology casework involving consultations, observations, assessments, therapeutic work, report writing. and training She has also been a representative on a multi-disciplinary panel for Autism Spectrum Disorders, helped to establish and develop an Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder pathway with LA and NHS colleagues and spent time working for the Virtual School supporting Children in Care.
Outside of work she is a mum to 2 children, she enjoys DIY, reading and watching psychological and crime dramas. She also loves history and is a member of the National Trust.
John Crichton is a retired headteacher.
Having completed his BEd at the University of Manchester he moved to the West Midlands and took up a teaching post in Dudley. Having taught for 10 years he took up acting headships at Quarry Bank and Church of the Ascension Primary Schools before becoming headteacher at Roberts Primary in 1986.
John remained as headteacher there for 20 years guiding them through two successful Ofsted inspections and overseeing the building of the new school. In his latter years as a headteacher he also qualified as a Registered Ofsted Inspector.
Having taken early retirement in 2006 John is now established as a Director of Educational Psychology for Everyone Ltd and is the Company's Business Manager.
When he is not working John enjoys spending time with his wife and rescue dogs Callie and Honey and watching Man Utd!
Jas Johal is an Assistant Educational Psychologist. She completed her BSc in Human Psychology at Aston University in 2006 and a PGCE in Primary Education at the University of Wolverhampton in 2007. She went on to teach for over decade in a range of mainstream and specialist schools throughout the West Midlands, taking on Head of Year and Assessment Lead roles.
Outside of work she enjoys writing children’s stories and has completed a ‘Creative Writing for Children’ course at the Mac, Birmingham (Oct 2017-March 2018). She has passion for art and is currently learning how to paint using watercolour. She is particularly interested in the contribution that Art can make to personal wellbeing, and is looking into in attending courses in the near future. She also enjoys swimming and running and she loves to travel.
Nicky Clark’s background was in business, sales and export after getting lower A level grades than she needed to study speech and language therapy. Being a fast runner, she was granted a place on a course at Loughborough college studying business and foreign languages. Seb Coe wasn’t as interested in her A levels grades as he was in her 100m racing ability!
In 1993 she decided to go back to university to fulfil her ambition of being a speech and language therapist and in 1997 graduated with a 2:1 BSc (Hons) in speech pathology and therapeutics from the University of Central England in Birmingham (now BCU.) Proving that you can still achieve what you want despite achieving disappointing grades with grit and determination 😊
Nicky is a highly motivated, responsible, hardworking, conscientious individual with over 22 years experience at senior speech and language therapist level. She supports children and young people of all ages with difficulties with a specific speech disorder and/or developmental language disorder. She also has a special interest in stammering. Nicky has always worked for the NHS and since 2005 has been contracted to provide services to Staffordshire County Council giving high levels of support to young people in mainstream schools. Nicky is an ELKLAN tutor and provides training to staff and parents to support young people’s communication difficulties both at home and in the classroom. ELKLSN is an evidence-based classroom specific course. As part of this course, participants may complete a portfolio to gain an additional qualification. Nicky is a mum to 2 lovely young people, one of whom has just completed a B/TEC level 3 course at South Staffordshire College and the other is studying Fashion, Business and Promotion at Birmingham City University. She is a keen gardener and cook and enjoys being semi bendy at yoga classes :) She is involved in working for local charities such as Teenage Cancer Trust and a committee member for Lichfield’s Got Talent (LGT) as audition co-ordinator and stage manager. LGT raises money for local charities such as Lichfield Arts. Nicky is passionate about reducing her carbon footprint, recycling and finding innovative ways to use less plastic.
Hayley Adams is a Specialist Teacher.
Having qualified as a teacher in 2006, Hayley went on to completed her PgCert SpLD (Dyslexia) with AMBDA in 2018-2019.
She currently works as a teacher in a Halesowen primary school, a Dyslexia Tutor for Hereford and Worcestershire Dyslexia Association and for EPE as an Associate Specialist Teacher offering assessment, monitroing and tutor sessions.
Dr Emily Crichton (nee Williams) is a Chartered Educational Psychologist and Managing Director of EPE.
She completed her BSc (Hons) in Psychology at the University of Birmingham between 1999 and 2003 during which time she developed a real interest in educational and child psychology undertaking research into children's understanding which was later (2004) published in the journal of Child Development:Three- to four-year-olds’ recognition that symbols have a stable meaning: Pictures are understood before written words. Apperly, I.A., Williams, E. & Williams, J. (2004). Child Development, 75(5) 1510-1522.
Having decided she wanted to pursue a career in Educational Psychology, in 2002, she went on to undertake a PGCE in Primary Education at the University of Birmingham and having qualified as a teacher spent 3 years working in a large urban primary school in Dudley in the West Midlands. Her interest in working to support children with additional needs continued to develop and in her final year she was promoted to the position of Special Education Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) completing a Masters Level PGCE in SENCo Standards.
In 2005 she was offered the post of Assistant Educational Psychologist in Dudley and a year later she was awarded a place on the Doctorate in Applied Educational Psychology at the University of Nottingham.
During her training she gained experience of working as a Trainee Educational Psychologist in Staffordshire and Birmingham before returning to Dudley to complete her qualification.
Since she finished her Doctorate in 2011 she has worked as a Chartered Educational Psychologist in Dudley for 3 years during which time she had responsibility for a large patch of schools including primary, secondary and specialist settings and worked alongside colleagues from a range of Educational, Social Care and Health settings.
In January 2015 she launched the limited company of Educational Psychology for Everyone (EPE) and she continues to practice as an Educational Psychologist under this trading name. She is registered with the Health Care Professions Council (HCPC) and complies with its regulations. This is a legal requirement in order to be able to use the title of Educational Psychologist (as it is now protected) and to practice. As a registered psychologist she will be required to keep a log of continuing professional training. In addition, she is a member of the BPS and is registered with them as a Chartered Psychologist. The BPS, under the terms of its Royal Charter, is required to maintain a Code of Conduct, Ethical Principles and Guidelines. As the professional and learned body for psychology, it is responsible for promoting excellence and ethical practice in science, education, research and practical applications of psychology. The BPS is responsible for setting the academic gold standard for psychology teaching and professional training and until recently has had a voluntary regulatory function to protect the public. It has held a voluntary register of Chartered Psychologists, who have been required to adhere to the code of conduct and ethical practice and maintain professional development. The title “Chartered Psychologist” is protected by the BPS. It is deemed misconduct to claim such a title without the relevant professional training qualification. All members of the BPS are required to comply with the Code of Conduct. The Code addresses issues such as consent, confidentiality, competence and communication as well as ethical issues related to assessment, intervention and research.
In addition to the work she undertakes for EPE, Emily works as an on-line tutor for Real Group (UK) Ltd - an e-learning and psychology consultancy company. For more information about Real Group see their website www.realgroup.co.uk.
When she is not working Emily enjoys spending time with her husband, friends and rescue dogs Callie and Honey. She also loves travelling and is a huge Wolves fan.