Our Services

Psycho-educational Assessment
(Learning Barrier Identification and Support)

The purpose of a psycho-educational assessment is to provide clarity about and an understanding of the challenges your child might be facing. This information could mean the difference between your child only just getting by academically, or thriving and reaching their full potential.

The assessment focuses on the measurement of various skills relating to someone’s development. These are in relation to educational and psychological areas of functioning. It is a formal process which is usually requested by a teacher or by one or both parents. A variety of assessment tools are used (both standardised and qualitative) to get to the root of academic, behavioural and emotional problem. Recommendations and suggestions are given accordingly. If your child is consulting with other professionals, for example a speech therapist or occupational therapist, the assessment can help guide these therapeutic interventions.

The psycho-educational assessment typically takes about five hours, which includes an intake and feedback with parents. A full report will be provided during the feedback session.

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School Readiness Assessment

The primary purpose of a school readiness assessment is to predict readiness for school entry and to identify preschool children who may benefit from additional stimulation programmes, learning support or retention.

This assessment is usually conducted with children in Grade R and Grade 0 to identify any possible developmental shortfalls that may affect their learning and development. Failure to identify these challenges can adversely affect a child’s entire school career. During such an assessment, focus is placed on physical development, cognitive skills and academic readiness, as well as on the child’s social-emotional functioning. Factors considered in a school readiness assessment include the child’s emotional maturity, ability to follow directions and to work cooperatively with peers and adult figures.

In addition to early identification and support, a school readiness assessment can also serve the purpose of reassuring parents and caregivers that their child is progressing adequately.

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Career Guidance (subject choice and study choice)

Career counselling is the process through which psychological assessments and interviewing techniques are used to empower clients to make an informed decision about their future or current career prospects.

Career assessments are tools designed to help individuals understand how a variety of personal attributes (i.e. interests, values, preferences, motivations, aptitudes and skills) impact their potential success and satisfaction with different career options and work environments. These assessments are designed to assist individuals of various ages and life stages in making suitable educational and occupational decisions, helping them manage their careers optimally.

For Grade 9 students, this process can help select the subjects they take at school. For Grade 11 and Grade 12 learners, it will facilitate decisions around what to study after school and help identify the most suitable career options. Older clients already in the working environment can use the assessments to optimise their career satisfaction and needs or to evaluate career change options.

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Concession or Accommodation Assessment

A concession or accommodation assessment is used to determine if a learner or student requires certain support or accommodations to help achieve their full potential.

Concession applications for Grade 12 examinations must be submitted during the child’s Grade 11 year.

Once learners go on to tertiary level education, continued concession support is available to them. Concession and accommodation assessments are generally required by schools and the education department when applying for learners with barriers. They can be granted the appropriate selection of the following concessions during examinations:

  • Additional Time;
  • A Scribe writes verbatim what the learner dictates;
  • A Reader reads all text in an examination paper to a learner;
  • An amanuensis is a person who reads to and scribes for the learner;
  • A Prompter: A verbal or physical cue performed to refocus a learner’s attention;
  • Spelling accommodations;
  • Handwriting accommodations;
  • Braille or Enlarged print;
  • Computer assistance;
  • Medication/Food Intake;
  • Class Assistants ensure that he/she is able to complete an examination;
  • Rest Breaks are period of time when the learner is not required to be at his/her desk, but must remain in the examination venue;
  • Separate Venues are quiet environments away from the main examination centre;
  • Special Equipment.

Applications for Concessions and Accommodations need to be accompanied by the following documentation:

  • Psycho-Educational Assessment – A full psycho-educational assessment which thoroughly assesses the barrier to learning and a comprehensive clinical history is required. An educational assessment report completed within 6 months of the application must be submitted.
  • Relevant Medical Reports – A medical report from the relevant practitioner must be provided. This report must include the date of diagnosis, diagnosis, intervention strategies (current and previous), residual challenges and the professional recommendation.
  • Supporting Historical Evidence – Any supporting reports such as occupational therapy, speech therapy, remedial programme reports or any other medical documents should be included to support the accommodation application.
  • Teacher Comments – At least three pertinent subject teacher comments should be included with the application. These should be written independently. The comments should provide an understanding of how the learner’s difficulties impact on work in class and in assessments. Therefore, comments from teachers of subjects where the learner’s difficulties are manifested should be included.
  • School Report – The most recent school report must be submitted as well as any other recent relevant school reports.
  • School Samples – Examples of work which support the consideration of the accommodation being applied for should be submitted. For example – a handwriting application would require submission of an example of timed deteriorating handwriting, a time accommodation would require samples of incomplete tests and a reading accommodation would require tests involving comprehension.

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Therapy for children

When working with children I use an integrated approach for treatment, using cognitive behavioural therapy, play therapy, child-centered therapy and narrative therapy.

When working with children below the age of 12 years, the collaboration and active involvement of parents (and sometimes the teacher of the child) is crucial for positive therapeutic outcomes. Parents are key role players when a child is experiencing difficulties. When necessary, classroom observation and consultation with the teacher is also utilised before therapeutic intervention.

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Therapy for adolescents and young adults

Today’s teenagers experience many challenges, especially with regard to school performance, friendship- and dating relationships, family relationships, peer pressure, identity development and self-esteem. For young adults the amount of changes that take place such as moving homes, starting college/university, leaving old friends and making new friends, getting a job or living in a new city, can feel overwhelming and anxiety provoking.

Therapy can provide a valuable opportunity to gain new insight and learn new skills so that you feel more empowered to cope with the challenges you may be facing. The therapy will be adapted to meet your specific needs and and my approach usually involves cognitive-behavioural therapy and person-centered therapy. A safe space is provided where each individual can speak freely and without shame, fear of judgement or condition of worth.

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LGBTIQIA+ Affirming

Love is love.

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Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
(CBT)-Based Psychoeducation for Adults

Psychoeducation is among the most effective of the evidence-based practices that have emerged in both clinical trials and community settings. Because of the flexibility of the model, which incorporates both illness-specific information and tools for managing related circumstances, psychoeducation has broad potential for many forms of illnesses and varied life challenges (Lukens & McFarlane, 2004).

Psychoeducation is a professionally delivered treatment modality that integrates and synergises psychotherapeutic and educational interventions. Many forms of psychosocial intervention are based on traditional medical models designed to treat pathology, illness, liability, and dysfunction. In contrast, psychoeducation reflects a paradigm shift to a more holistic and competence-based approach, stressing health, collaboration, coping, and empowerment (Dixon, 1999; Marsh, 1992). It is based on strengths and focused on the present. The patient/client and/or family are considered partners with the provider in treatment, on the premise that the more knowledgeable the care recipients and informal caregivers are, the more positive health-related outcomes will be for all. To prepare participants for this partnership, psychoeducational techniques are used to help remove barriers to comprehending and digesting complex and emotionally loaded information and to develop strategies to use the information in a proactive fashion. The assumption is that when people confront major life challenges or illnesses, their functioning and focus is naturally disrupted (Mechanic, 1995).

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Psychotherapy for physically ill children/adolescents and their families

Hanlie’s interest in helping physically ill children and their families goes back to 2014 when she started doing volunteer work for Operation Smile, an organisation which provides free surgeries to repair cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities in children and adults around the globe.

“My main role is to emotionally prepare patients and families for surgery. Everything I do is directed toward reducing the psychological stress and trauma of anaesthesia and surgery to a minimum. Usually a patient (or a small group) is scheduled for at least an hour of psychological preparation, which may give the patient sufficient emotional security to face such a life-changing procedure.” Hanlie has participated in missions in Mozambique, DR Congo, Malawi and South Africa.

Knowledge and application of foundations in theories of child development, play, stress and coping, and family systems are the basis for this practice. In her private practice Hanlie has worked with children and adolescents diagnosed with cancer and other life altering diseases.

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Exposure therapy for specific phobias

Children suffering from a specific phobia have an excessive and uncontrollable fear of an object or situation. This triggers so much anxiety that it can disrupt normal activities. A specific phobia is one of the most common anxiety disorders amongst children and adolescents. Although phobias are usually considered to have a relatively straight forward clinical presentation, they can interfere substantially with the daily life of young individuals.

Fortunately, specific phobias are highly treatable through behaviour therapy. Exposure is the key working element. A typical treatment involves gradual, repeated exposure to the feared object, event or situation. A child afraid of dogs might begin by looking at a picture of a dog, then graduate to playing with a stuffed dog, eventually being comfortable enough to be in the same room as a small dog, and so on. Therapy focused on teaching strategies for coping with fear and anxious thought patterns is another common option for older children.

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Parent guidance and support

Parental guidance is a process whereby support and guidance is given to parents to be more effective, but also help them understand their own behaviour towards certain situations and why this may or may not encourage or discourage certain behavioural and/ or emotional difficulties in children and adolescents.

During these sessions we will also discuss parenting styles and which parenting behaviours and attitudes may contribute to the current emotional climate within the parent-child relationship. Supporting the parent in changing ineffective parenting behaviours can bring tremendous change within a child’s world as it is one of the most important systems.

Parents dealing with behavioural and emotional difficulties in their children can feel very overwhelmed. It is therefore very important to make sure that the parents are supported and equipped to deal with difficult situations and to empower them in the process.

This in turn will have a positive effect on the child and on the family system as a whole.

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