Our consultants are experienced professionals in child development and medicine with a long history of association with the Medical Center Nursery School. They offer services in various areas.
The school's educational consultant and curriculum specialist, Liege Motta, spends time observing in each classroom one day every two weeks throughout the year, and meets with staff members individually and in teams to discuss her observations. She also provides staff development workshops and offers expertise in the areas of curriculum, classroom and child behavior management techniques, among others. She and the directors make decisions about staffing and schedules; equipment and facilities; and the curriculum areas which require extra support, re-structuring, or re-focusing. She makes an annual report to the Board of Trustees.
The school's consulting psychologist, Elizabeth Auricchio, meets with the staff six times a year to discuss problems in an individual child's functioning or specific difficulties within the classrooms. Children and/or difficulties are selected for discussion based upon need and at the discretion of the director and/or the classroom staff. Recommendations from the psychologist for out-of-school intervention always are shared with parents. Referrals for some diagnostic evaluations can be made to the school's psychologist.
Candace Erickson is the school's consulting pediatrician. She serves as a member of the MCNS Board of Trustees and advises the school about medical issues. She also provides expertise in the areas of child development and child behavior management. Again, if her recommendations include out-of-school intervention, they are shared with parents. Harriet McGurk, a developmental pediatrician at Children’s Hospital, also provides periodic consultation services.
Clarice Kestenbaum, Retired Director of Training and Education in the Division of Child Psychiatry, and Elisabeth Guthrie, current Director of Training supervise the Child Psychiatry Fellows and provide consulting services during their regular supervision both to provide guidance to the school and to educate the fellows about the role of a mental health consultant in a school setting.
Lauren Robertson, an occupational therapist, also serves as a consultant to the school and as a board member. She may be called upon to do observations of youngsters who appear uneven motorically and provide suggestions of ways the staff may work more effectively with those children. She occasionally provides private therapy in the school when arranged by an individual child's parents.
Judith Pollak, a speech and language pathologist, will do informal speech/language screenings, consult with the staff, and is available for private speech/language therapy in the school.