Association of Educational Psychologists
The Association of Educational Psychologists (AEP) is the trade union and professional body for educational psychologists in the UK. Its remit is to support the rights and effective working practices of its members, to promote the educational psychology profession, to promote best practice, to ensure the wellbeing of children and young people and to highlight any concerns regarding these issues. The Whitehouse Consultancy was appointed by the AEP with a brief to promote the educational psychology profession and the AEP’s concerns on behalf of its members and children and young people in the media and Westminster.
The Whitehouse team has developed and implemented an extensive and integrated communications programme for the AEP since our appointment, which has included briefings and dialogue with parliamentarians and relevant officials in government departments, engagement with legislation, briefings of key journalists and proactive public and media relations.
Our work has included managing the AEP’s stakeholder engagement during the passage of the Children and Families Act, highlighting concerns over NICE guidance on the use of medications for young children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and engaging directly with devolved nations to address concerns about the closure of educational psychology training courses.
The AEP is now regularly called upon by government and parliamentarians to support the policy making process, with engagement related to the Children and Families Act ensuring the inclusion of a provision for educational psychologists to have a statutory role in providing advice to local authorities during the statutory assessment process – which has effectively guaranteed the future of the educational psychology workforce. Our work on the AEP’s behalf has also helped prevent the immediate closure of an educational psychology training course in Wales, with the Welsh government funding the course for the next year and committing to a long-term review of the workforce in which the AEP will play a major part.
Whitehouse has similarly ensured that the AEP is regularly in the national and specialist educational media – securing a front page story in the Daily Telegraph regarding the AEP’s concerns over ADHD medications and regular commentary in trade media such as Children & Young People Now, the Times Educational Supplement and SEN Magazine.
“We receive regular feedback from our members telling us how much they value the work which the Whitehouse team has done on behalf of the AEP, particularly in helping to strengthen the dialogue between the profession and politicians and media contacts at a national level, but also to keep members up to date with national developments across the UK. The current status of the profession has been significantly enhanced by the joint work carried out by the AEP and Whitehouse teams.”
Kate Fallon, General Secretary Association of Educational Psychologists.