Dr. Maura Paczan
Title: Lead School Psychologist
Phone: (724) 443-7230, ext. 6503
Dr. Paczan is an accomplished psychologist who has dedicated her career to the awareness of mental health, suicide prevention, and intervention in Pine-Richland, the Pittsburgh area, and nationally. She advocates for the ‘Whole Child’ approach to build resiliency, strengthen protective factors and support the health and wellness of all students, families, and staff. She emphasizes the importance of partnerships to improve programs on safety, build a positive school climate and ensure accessibility to mental health services.
Dr. Paczan has over 20 years of experience in clinical, research, educational, and leadership positions. A focal point at Pine-Richland is building collaborative relationships with interdisciplinary teams to best support K 12 students in the regular education classroom (Least Restrictive Environment) and through researched-based interventions. She has taken a leadership role in the expansion of the Psychological Services Department and the Continuum of Mental Health supports for students and families.
She understands and shares the importance of diagnostic assessment that is linked with best practice strategies and intervention, progress monitoring, and programming for students diagnosed with autism, emotional disturbance, specific learning disabilities, intellectual disability, and multiple disabilities. She has expertise with program development such as Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS- Academic, Social-Emotional Behavioral, Gifted and/or Highly Achieving), Effective Instructional Strategies, Provision of Special Education Services K-12, Autism Initiative and ABA supports, Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973, School-wide Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports (RAMS Way), Functional Behavior Assessments (FBA)/Positive behavior support plans, Nondiscrimination- Policy 103, Diversity and School Culture, Resiliency-Mental Health Awareness-Continuum of Supports, Suicide Prevention and Intervention, Crisis Prevention and Intervention, Postvention, and trauma-informed practices.
At Pine-Richland, she has participated in strategic planning and the In-Depth Program Review for the English Language Arts, Gifted and/or Highly Achieving, Special Education and MTSS, and School Counseling Services. Through the Gifted and/or Highly Achieving In-Depth Program review, she assisted in the development of a system for universal screeners, refine the criteria for identifying students (K 12 matrices), progress monitoring and outcomes towards standards-based goals identified in GIEPs and enrichment through Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS).
Dr. Paczan earned her M.S.Ed. and Ph.D.Certification in School Psychology at Duquesne University. She is a certified School Psychologist, and a Trainer in the Field of School Psychology and provides Field-Based Supervision. Prior to Pine-Richland School District, she worked in private practice to provide therapeutic mental health services, and contractual psychological services in educational systems, including the Pittsburgh Public Schools/Project Enterprise Jacob Javits for the identification of students traditionally underrepresented in gifted and talented programs, particularly economically disadvantaged, limited English proficient (LEP), and disabled students. She worked at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center-Western Psychiatric Hospital and Behavioral Health as a Counselor and Research Specialist with Course and Outcomes of Bipolar Youth, as a Clinical Psychiatric Evaluator for Emergency and Intake Service, and as a Milieu Therapist to provide Cognitive Behavioral and Dialectical Behavioral Therapeutic Services.