Maryland School 
 Psychologists' Association

MSPA Spring Conference 2019

  • 12 Apr 2019
  • 8:15 AM - 4:00 PM
  • The Hotel at Arundel Preserves, 7795 Arundel Mills Blvd, Hanover, MD 21076
  • 182


  • 1 table, includes 1 meal

Registration is closed

Spring Conference 2019


How to Build, Scale and Sustain your RTI Effort to Prevent Academic Failure, Deliver Improved Learning and Make Accurate Eligibility Decisions in your School


Amanda VanDerHeyden, Ph.D.

Founder, Spring Math (, President of Education Research & Consulting, Inc. Author and Speaker



Friday, April 12, 2019 


The Hotel at Arundel Preserves

7795 Arundel Mills Blvd.

Hanover, MD 21076


Mail in- REGISTRATION DEADLINE postmarked March 25






Program Overview:

8:15 - 9:00      Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:00 - 12:00    How to get people to do what works, from more efficient screening, to attaining core instructional excellence, and sustaining remedial intervention   

12:00 - 1:30    Buffet Lunch, MSPA General Meeting and MSPA Awards

1:30 - 4:00      Screening for at-risk learners, identification of dyslexia, dysgraphia and dyscalculia, as well as how to intervene to close the achievement gap   



It is well known that some children are prone to struggle when learning to read, write and solve mathematical problems. The school psychologist is the assessment expert who is uniquely trained to advise parents and teachers about best practices to prevent and repair academic skill gaps. In nearly all systems, a tremendous amount of data are available that can be used to understand learning needs and promote stronger learning gains for the system and the individual student. To be of the greatest benefit to the children we serve, school psychologists must know how to harness the power of academic screening to give students the academic proficiency with all its resulting economic and social benefits for the child. The school psychologist has to build trust with stakeholders, cultivate an understanding and buy-in for the “how” of academic assessment and intervention, and effectively engage with system contingencies to promote the correct use of the tactics that can work when correctly implemented. Drawing on applied behavior analysis and implementation science, Dr. VanDerHeyden will detail how to get people to do what works- from more efficient screening, to attaining core instructional excellence and sustaining remedial intervention in ways that close achievement gaps for vulnerable students.

The second half of the day will dig into the how-to of assessment- from screening to intervention and then to the eligibility decision. The correct diagnosis of dyslexia, dysgraphia and dyscalculia begins in the classroom. Dr. VanDerHeyden will provide a framework for installing and evaluating screening data to identify initial risk then detail step-by-step actions to evaluate the four federal criteria for SLD (performing below grade-level state standards in one of the 8 areas, demonstrating a pattern of strengths and weaknesses consistent with SLD, or lack of progress in response to scientifically validated instruction, rule out sensory deficits and rule out lack of instructional opportunity as possible causes of inadequate achievement).

Beginning with the foundation and working toward the ultimate eligibility decision, RTI requires hundreds of little actions and decisions, in tandem, along the journey. When implemented well, system improvements like reduced risk overall, improved achievement, more efficient and accurate decisions related to resource allocations, equity and even school climate improvements are expected outcomes. Using real-life examples, Dr. VanDerHeyden will walk you through step-by-step from the installation of a universal screening program, to planning and delivering core instruction upgrades, to delivery of intensive interventions with all the many decision points along the way to ensure your RTI implementation success. She will highlight common pitfalls to avoid and emphasize contemporary research findings so that attendees can take away powerful practices to better their implementation efforts. She will share tips and metrics for tracking the quality of your RTI effort and show you how to make the adjustments needed to keep RTI on track. Finally, Dr. VanDerHeyden will walk through the eligibility decision process showing you the connection between a high-quality RTI effort, the final eligibility decision and subsequent instructional planning for the newly eligible student.


Learning Objectives:

  1. Detail current findings in implementation science to guide the school psychologist in leading academic assessment and intervention at the system level and effectively communicating with stakeholders
  2. Discuss MSDE guidance on assessment and eligibility determination related to Dyslexia, Dysgraphia and Dyscalculia, as well as current implementation across various MD counties
  3. Review methods for determination of Specific Learning Disability eligibility under IDEA (Response to Intervention, Pattern of Strengths and Weaknesses, IQ-Achievement Discrepancy)
  4. Learn the active ingredients of an RTI effort and how to implement them effectively in your setting
  5. Learn how to harness the resulting data along the way, to make decisions about initial risk and continued risk
  6. Learn how to confidently use RTI data as part of the determination process for SLD eligibility


Amanda VanDerHeyden, Ph.D., is a private consultant and researcher who has directed and evaluated numerous school-wide intervention and reform efforts. Dr. VanDerHeyden has held faculty positions at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center and University of California at Santa Barbara. She is President of Education Research & Consulting, Inc., and serves as scientific adviser to TIES and the Center on Innovations in Learning. She has served as a guest panel member for NIH and standing panel member for the Institute for Education Sciences at the U.S. Department of Education. Amanda has served on numerous boards including the RTI Advisory Board for the National Center for Learning Disabilities and SEDL. Dr. VanDerHeyden has published more than 80 scholarly articles and chapters and 7 books. She is also co-author of the Evidence-Based Mathematics Innovation Configuration for the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality at Vanderbilt University and now the Collaboration for Effective Education Development, Accountability, and Reform at University of Florida.

For the last 20 years, Dr. VanDerHeyden has helped schools use their data to become more effective. She has built, refined, and studied now widely-used tactics including: the Can’t Do/Won’t Do assessment, Academic screening measures, RTI decision models to guide allocation of instructional resources, and Classwide math intervention.

Dr. VanDerHeyden started her own consulting business in 2007. Since 2007, she has given keynote addresses across the country to state departments of education and school psychology organizations in 28 states. She has directed and evaluated school-wide improvement efforts with strong results on student learning; while gaining an appreciation for how hard it is to get effective tactics used consistently in classrooms.

During Dr. VanDerHeyden’s career, technology has become the new frontier of education. She built Intervention Adviser and now Spring Math, bringing together all that she has learned about effective system improvement in schools: accurate and efficient assessment as a gateway to instructional enhancement, high-yield intervention delivery, and managing system change in schools, to help teachers help more children experience mathematics success. She is fully engaged in the ongoing development and enhancement of Spring Math and considers it the most meaningful and fun work of her life so far.


 Download Conference Brochure here MSPA Spring Conference 2019.pdf


Important Information: 

The conference will be held at The Hotel at Arundel Preserves, 7795 Arundel Mills Boulevard, Hanover, Maryland 21076. Attendees can book a room at the hotel the night before the conference at a special MSPA rate of $152.00. Call 1-888-624-4011 and identify yourself as an MSPA conference attendee. The room block will be released to general registrations on March 15, 2019.

Documentation of attendance for 5.5 hours of Continuing Professional Development/Continuing Education (CPD/CE) credit will be provided to certified school psychologists and licensed psychologists who complete the entire workshop. Partial credit cannot be awarded. In order to receive CPD/CE credit, attendees must arrive no later than 15 minutes after the start, and may not leave prior to 15 minutes before the end of the program. The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and hence the Maryland Board of Examiners of Psychologists recognize MSPA as an approved provider of CPD/CE for psychologists (NASP APS #1002). MSPA maintains responsibility for the program.

Go to to register and pay online or download the full brochure to mail in your registration form and check to: MSPA Spring Conference, P.O. Box 1859, Westminster, MD 21158.

Mail-in registrations must be postmarked by March 25, 2019.  There is a $25.00 additional fee for late registrants. The late fee goes into effect beginning March 15, 2019. There is an ONLINE REGISTRATION DEADLINE of April 1, 2019 and there will be NO WALK-IN REGISTRATIONS. If you want confirmation of your registration, please include a stamped, self-addressed postcard. Your attendance certificate acts as your receipt (monetary receipts are available at the conference upon request). Registration is limited and accepted on a first come, first served basis. Reimbursement requests for registration cancellations will be honored until March 31, 2019. Reimbursement requests after that date cannot be guaranteed.

MSPA does not offer a group registration rate however, employers who register a group of 10 or more will receive 1 complimentary registration. Email the list of names as well as registration forms for each registrant to Amy Jagoda at She will give you the total cost for the registrations.

The required annual MSPA general membership meeting will be held during the luncheon. Meeting rooms are wheelchair accessible and any participant that requires any special services (such as an interpreter), should note this requirement on the registration form at least one month in advance of the conference. Persons with questions or special needs should contact: Amy Jagoda at (410) 386-1818 or .

The MSPA Program Committee recognizes the commitment of time and resources to attend professional conferences. Due to the sensitive nature of the topics discussed, as well as the professional setting of our activities, we cannot accommodate children at our conferences. We will however, make efforts at each conference to accommodate the privacy needs of nursing mothers. Thank you for understanding.




Vision: All students will thrive in school, at home, and throughout their lives.

Mission: MSPA promotes and advocates for best practices in school psychology to improve learning, behavior, and mental health for all students, families, and schools.

Direct website related questions to Direct other questions to the appropriate board member at Executive Board or Officers.

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