Support Services

Our Philosophy

  • We believe that every child represents a unique constellation of qualities including learning profile efficiencies, temperamental characteristics and affinities.
  • We endorse a model of service delivery based on the spirit of health-enhancement (not repair), striving to help every student to reach his or her full potential.
  • Our goal is to establish an environment that reinforces help-seeking as being a positive behavior, fostering student self-awareness and self-advocacy.
  • We recognize that the continuity of care we can provide over the years coupled with our school size enables the framework for our work to happen in a meaningful way.
  • We embrace diversity of all types in our school community, confident that it creates a richly-textured, growth-promoting learning and social environment.
The Support Services department is comprised of School Psychologists, Learning Specialists, a Speech and Language Pathologist and a School Nurse.

  • School Psychologists provide individual assessment, individual counseling, parent guidance, crisis intervention and referral services. They also provide educational presentations to faculty, parents and students about a variety of learning and mental health-oriented topics and assist in creating and refining curriculum, school procedures and school policies. 
  • Learning Specialists provide Supplemental Instructional Support - small-group tutorial instruction designed to address specific academic skill difficulties in literacy and/ormath areas and/or to provide coaching in the area of Executive Functions (e.g. planning, organization, and attention issues).
  • The Speech and Language Pathologist screens students for articulation and language function and conducts hearing screenings. (Speech and Language therapy is available on a private fee basis).
  • The School Clinic Nurse provides support for emergent medical situations, administers basic first aid, distributes medicine at School and maintains student health records.

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  • Meet The Support Services Team

    Katherine B. Howard, M. A., NCSP, LPC
    Licensed School Psychologist and Licensed Professional Counselor
    Director of Support Services

    Professional Experiences: Over three decades in public and independent schools; graduate level university instructor; frequent presenter at national and regional conferences; authored curriculum for a professional development course; private practice consultancy to schools and non-profits; past Board Member of International Dyslexia Association and Advisory Board Member to All Kinds of Minds Institute

    Licensure: State of Ohio Board of Psychology School Psychology License; Nationally Certified School Psychologist; State of Ohio Licensed Professional Counselor; Ohio Department of Education License

    Education: BA, Dual Major in Psychology and Social Work; MA in Clinical/Community Psychology; post-MA Certficiation in School Psychology

    Lauren Rios, Ed.S.
    School Psychologist

    Professional Experience: 11 years in public and private school settings; one year as research assistant

    Licensure: Ohio Department of Education License

    Education: BS, Psychology; M.Ed. in School Psychology; Ed.S. in School Psychology

    Kathy Auxter
    Learning Specialist

    Professional Experience: Medina City Schools as Intervention Specialist for 32 years; West Holmes School District, 3 years
    Education: BS, dual major in Elementary Education and Special Education; MS in Outdoor Education

    Marie Meyo
    Learning Specialist

    Professional Experiences: 11 years in the classroom at Old Trail School and Nordonia Hills Schools
    Education: BS in Education with dual teaching certificate in Elementary Education and Kindergarten/Primary Early Childhood Education

    Earliene Sziraky
    Learning Specialist

    Professional Experiences: Akron, Stow and Revere Schools in elementary, secondary and special education

    Education: BS in Education, Postgraduate Work in reading and special education

    Nicole Owensby
    School Clinic Nurse

    Professional Experiences: Over 11 years as an LPN and 4 years as a School Health Nurse

    Education: Akron School of Practical Nursing

    Carrie Ravine, M.S., CCC-SLP
    Speech and Language Pathologist

    Professional Experiences: Over 9 years working as an SLP in private practice and school settings.

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  • Assessment

    One-on-one testing by a licensed school psychologist that is designed to help the student gain an understanding of his/her learning profile and how to engage in behaviors that support and maximize learning.
  • Conflict Resolution

    Aid students in participating in problem-solving that both resolves immediate interpersonal concerns and provides a template for peaceful, effective management of social conflict.
  • Counseling

    Support for students experiencing challenges in areas that impact their school experience.
  • Crisis Intervention

    During times of unexpected events of a traumatic nature, we provide direct support, assist in the development of a response plan and can refer families to other, outside resources.
  • Health Services

    Includes medical support for emergent situations, assistance with minor physical complaints, basic first aid and maintenance of physical health records for students. Distributes medication and speaks with students about health-related topics (i.e., the importance of handwashing.)
  • Instructional Support

    Small group instruction with a qualified teacher designed to remediate specific academic skill deficits in the areas of literacy and math. Small-group, skill-based coaching for students who require extra support to develop executive functions.
  • Liaison and Referral

    Direct parents and students to community-based resources to facilitate their access to appropriate practitioners and agencies.
  • Parent Education & Guidance

    Develop and present a variety of sessions on topics related to child development and school adjustment (i.e. homework, memory functions, literacy skills, time management, social skills, discipline, etc.) Provide support for parents seeking information on common parenting challenges.
  • Speech and Language Assessment & Therapy

    Screening by a licensed speech and language pathologist to determine speech and language skill development. Individual intervention to improve articulation, receptive and/or expressive language skills. (On a private fee basis, but provided on-site).
  • Student Education

    Develop and lead presentations to students on a variety of topics on an as-needed basis and also as part of the health education curriculum. For example, in the younger grades, the school psychologist may lead group sessions on friendship and conflict resolution strategies. In the older grades, the topics may include day-long retreats on motivation, on appreciating and respecting diversity, or on self-image and self-marketing. 
  • Teacher Consultation

    Support teachers in the provision of differentiated instruction and in the management of socio-behavioral issues with their students. Attend grade-level team meetings to assist with creative, collaborative problem-solving about ways to support students.
Old Trail School is an independent day school (toddler through grade eight) located in the heart of Cuyahoga Valley National Park.