Mental Health Services in School

General Information:

What is the difference between a School Psychologist and a Social Worker?

Mrs. Kerri Lanzieri - Social Worker

About Me:
I grew up in the East Greenwich Public Schools, graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 1997 with a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies. I then graduated from Simmons College in Boston with my Master's in Social Work. 

Before beginning in Smithfield Public Schools in 2007 as a School Social Worker, I worked as a Student Assistance Counselor in Burrillville, and a Clinical Therapist in Fall River. 

Currently at School I serve on the PTO Committee at William Winsor as the parent/faculty liaison and on the School Culture Committee at OCRS. 

I also live in Smithfield with my husband, two daughters, and rescue Schnauzer. In my spare time I love skiing, traveling, running, crafting, reading, and spending time with my family.

Please do not hesitate to contact me for any reason at all. 

My Role:
School social workers provide mental health services in schools and have specialized training to meet students’ social-emotional needs. Schools often are one of the first places where mental health issues are recognized and addressed (Hennessy & Green-Hennessey, 2000; Hoagwood et al., 2005). 

School social workers serve as the primary mental health providers for students and may be the only counseling professionals available to students and their families to initially identify and provide interventions for those issues. (Early&Vonk, 2001; Hennessy & Green-Hennessy, 2000; Kelly, Berzin, et al., 2010). 

The role of the school social worker as outlined in the SSWAA School Social Work National Practice Model includes:

• Provision of evidence-based education, behavior, and mental health services.

• Promotion of a school climate and culture conducive to student learning and teaching excellence. 

• Maximization of access to school-based and community-based resources (SSWAA, 2013).

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A School Social Worker takes part in Evaluation Team meetings, IEP meetings, Health and Safety Team meetings, and Consultation Team meetings.  They conduct Social Histories, Class Observations, Behavior Intervention Plans, and FBA’s (Functional Behavioral Assessments).  In times of Crisis Intervention, risk assessments are conducted, and contacts to DCYF/ mental health facilities are made.  

Currently, classes are being taught on friendship and bullying issues. Other topics which have been addressed in individual, group, family, and classroom settings include: grief, divorce, newcomers, anxiety, anger management, and stress reduction.   Finally, the opportunity for faculty and family consultation is always available. 

Please feel free to email me at any time (

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 WednesdayOCRS OCRS
 ThursdayOCRS OCRS 
 FridayWinsor Winsor

Mrs. Courtney McGee - School Psychologist

About Me:
I have lived in Rhode Island my entire life. I love reading, traveling, playing music, being outdoors, and spending time with my nieces and nephew. I also love being a School Psychologist and seeing children grow from Kindergarten through grade 5.

I attended Stonehill College, graduating with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor Sociology. I then attended Rhode Island College, graduating with a M.A. in Educational Counseling and a C.A.G.S. in School Psychology. After interning in Smithfield for 1 year, I was hired as the School Psychologist for Winsor and Old County Road School. Prior to working in Smithfield, I was employed at the Groden Center providing Home-Based Therapeutic Services to children with Autism.

At my schools, I am a member of the Response to Intervention Team, Evaluation Team, Consultation Team, IEP Team, Functional Behavioral Assessment Team, PBIS (at Old County), and Health and Safety Team (at Winsor). I consult with Mrs. Lanzieri, teachers, and administrators on a daily basis to develop interventions, plans, and data collection tools to meet the academic, behavioral, social, and emotional needs of all children. Coordination of services is also provided to students and their families through consultation with district-hired and community-based clinicians. One of my favorite parts of my job involves interacting with students through classroom lessons, as well as small group and individual counseling sessions. Additionally, I conduct School Psychological evaluations (which may include cognitive assessment, memory assessment, observations, and behavioral/social/emotional rating scales.)

Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns regarding your child's social, emotional, behavioral, or academic development.
My Role:

School psychologists are uniquely qualified members of school teams that support students’ ability to learn and teachers’ ability to teach. They apply expertise in mental health, learning, and behavior, to help children and youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally. School psychologists partner with families, teachers, school administrators, and other professionals to create safe, healthy, and supportive learning environments that strengthen connections between home, school, and the community.

School psychologists provide direct support and interventions to students, consult with teachers, families, and other school-employed mental health professionals (i.e., school counselors, school social workers) to improve support strategies, work with school administrators to improve school-wide practices and policies, and collaborate with community providers to coordinate needed services. 

They help schools successfully:

  • Improve Academic Achievement
  • Promote Positive Behavior and Mental Health
  • Support Diverse Learners
  • Create Safe, Positive School Climates
  • Strengthen Family–School Partnerships
  • Improve School-Wide Assessment and Accountability by monitoring individual student progress in academics and behavior
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 Monday OCRSWinsor