Leanne Hughes Hilger

School Psychologist

Hello! I work at Seward Tuesdays through Fridays. My goal is to help students succeed. You can read more about what I do below. I can be contacted at:



What is a school psychologist?

What is a school psychologist?

As a school psychologist, I am part of the Department of Special Education, but I work with students in both general and special education. At Seward, the services I provide include:

* Consultation with school staff and parents about students’ behavior and academic performance; instructional and behavior intervention strategies for individuals and groups of students; crisis prevention and response; program development and implementation.

* Short-term skill building with individual students and groups of students, usually with a focus on specific, school-related issues or crisis intervention.

* Evaluation of individual students for special education eligibility through observation, interview, record review, and direct assessment of cognitive ability, behavioral/social/emotional functioning, and adaptive behavior.

* Program evaluation and research, focused on determining the effectiveness of curricula, interventions and programs and bringing innovative, research-based practices into the schools.

* Education for staff, parents, and community members about child development, behavior management, disability awareness and support strategies, mental health disorders, and issues affecting the social/emotional health of children.

* Coaching/Supervision of Seward's Minnesota Reading Corps members and graduate-level school psychology practicum students.

National Association of School Psychologists

As the world's largest organization of school psychologists, NASP works to advance effective practices to improve students' learning, behavior, and mental health. The NASP vision is that all children and youth access the learning, behavior, and mental health support needed to thrive in school, at home, and throughout life. The NASP website has many useful resources for parents at:


Minnesota Reading Corps

Part of my role at Seward is to act as the Minnesota Reading Corps internal coach for tutor members working at Seward. Minnesota Reading Corps is a statewide initiative to help every Minnesota child become a successful reader by the end of 3rd grade. The program places AmeriCorps members as literacy tutors in sites across Minnesota to implement a researched-based early literacy effort to help struggling readers. Seward currently has two members working with a total of about 35 students from kindergarten through third grade during daily, individual 20-minutes tutoring sessions. If you are interested in learning more about MInnesota Reading Corps or becoming a tutor member (there are part-time options as well), visit:


This is one of my favorite visuals to use with children when they experience strong emotions. It is a call to mindfulness that when things are difficult, hold on/be still and take at least six slow, deep breaths. Calm, focused breathing helps us manage our emotions so we can think more clearly and make better decisions.