S3g. The National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS)

The National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS) was formally established as an executive agency of the Department of Education and Science (DES) in September 1999.         

The mission statement of NEPS is as follows:

“Our mission is to work with others to support the personal, social and educational development of all children through the application of psychological theory and practice in education, having particular regard for children with special educational needs”.

NEPS is organised into ten regions roughly corresponding to the Health Board Regions. This is to facilitate collaboration with our colleagues in the clinical services. There are locally based offices also. NEPS is a school-based service to both primary and post primary schools and referrals are prioritised at school level through a consultative process.

When an assessment is deemed necessary following this process, the NEPS psychologist in the school setting generally carries it out in the school setting.  Sometimes onward referral to other agencies/services may be indicated.

Support and Development

NEPS believes that by focusing more on the adults that support children every day, ie teachers and parents that psychologists will be able to reach out to far more children and thus be more effective in removing obstacles to learning.

Some of the areas of where psychologists may be able to offer support and development work is outlined below:

  • Work on school policies and procedures
  • Advisory work, including in-service
  • Advice on appraisal of student needs
  • Advice on classroom strategies and resources
  • Work with parent or students
  • Research and Development work


NEPS has published a leaflet for schools entitled, ‘Working Together to Make a Difference for Children’ that outlines how it hopes to achieve this type of service.

NEPS has developed a model of service for schools that combines assessment and individual casework with support and development work.  (See pdf file NEPS Model of Service)

Contact details:

National Educational Psychological Service,

Head Office, Frederick Court, 24-27 North Frederick Street, Dublin, 1.

Tel: +353-1-889 2700; Fax: +353-1-889 2755

e-mail: neps@education.gov.ie