Each member of the On Track Team has dedicated their career to helping children and have worked in community health, Child Adolescence Mental Health Service, Early Childhood Intervention Services and school settings.
We are highly trained and skilled in assessment and diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and other developmental delays as well as providing comprehensive multidisciplinary diagnosis and subsequent therapy.
Danella Taylor – Psychologist
Danella is the founder and principal psychologist of On Track Therapy Group. She established On Track Therapy in 2009. Danella is passionate about working holistically with children, adolescents and their families. She established On Track Therapy to empower families in achieving their goals and helping children thrive. The team at On Track Therapy Group represents this vision and passion. We all work together with families to create a team around the child that helps support and develop each child’s unique abilities and skills.
Danella specialises in developmental and emotional childhood disorders, including Autism, Asperges Disorder, anxiety, depression and conduct disorders. She has worked with children, adolescents and their families for more than 17 years.
Some of Danella’s career highlights include:
- Provided expert consultation for the Australian government department of Early Childhood Intervention Service in Community Health, where she led the establishment of a community-based assessment clinic.
- Part of the first multi-systemic team in a United Kingdom clinical trial, following training in the therapy in the United States. She worked in London for eight years with disadvantaged children and adolescents and their families.
- Worked in Child Adolescence Mental Health Service for five years where she set up a service for disadvantaged young people and their families with extremely challenging behaviour.
Developed and delivered a comprehensive training package for social workers, nurses, educators and other professionals.
Vicky Tsiakalakis – Psychologist
Vicky has had experience with working with school aged children across the state of Victoria for the past 6 years. Vicky initially held a position with the Department of Human Services in the Behaviour and Intervention Service Team (BIST) and then worked with a private company for 6 years. During this employment period she worked exclusively with school aged children (Prep – Year 12). In this setting, Vicky worked in schools as a psychologist providing counselling and assessment services as well as providing consultation to teachers and school staff. As part of her role as a psychologist working within schools she also conducted assessments and wrote applications to provide further support for students with additional needs as part of the funding processes in Government, Catholic and Independent schools. Vicky also often worked in collaboration with other professionals such paediatricians, psychiatrists, speech pathologists, case managers, social workers and teachers. As part of her role, Vicky gained extensive experience with psycho-educational assessments including cognitive and educational tests.
Vicky is experienced in counselling and has a great interest in anxiety management. She has developed and delivered psychological interventions for school aged students. She is passionate and experienced in facilitating therapy groups (focuses included the following but not exclusively to; resilience, body image, anger management, anxiety, and social skills). She is a qualified Cogmed Coach and has experience delivering the Cogmed Working Memory Intervention to individual clients and schools.
Simone Lenthall – Occupational Therapist
Simone Lenthall graduated from the University of Western Sydney in 2007 with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) Honours. Her strong interest in Paediatrics saw her awarded First Class Honours for her dissertation titled ‘The Views of Paediatric Occupational Therapists regarding research priorities in Paediatrics’.
Simone has gained experience in private practice, Early Intervention, child care, kinder and school settings both in Melbourne and Sydney. She enjoys employing family centred practice to meet the goals of clients. Simone has experience working with children whom have a variety of diagnoses including Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, Global Developmental and Intellectual Delays, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome and Dyspraxia.
Simone develops intervention plans to assist in the development of a child’s core stability, fine and gross motor skills, visual perception, motor planning, self-regulation and social/emotional regulation. Intervention plans strive to improve the well-being of clients and their families. Simone has also been involved in the facilitation of group programs.
Gosia Capuzzi – Speech Pathologist
Gosia is a Certified Practising Speech Pathologist (CPSP). She graduated from LaTrobe University, Bundoora, in 2003 with a Bachelor of Speech Pathology. Gosia has worked for the Department of Education in mainstream schools, Special Schools for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and in private practice. Gosia sees both children and young adults in a variety of therapy settings (kindergarten/ child care, school, day service and at home).
Gosia has worked within a multi-disciplinary team, alongside Psychologists, Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists and Music Therapists for many years. Gosia enjoys working together with parents, kindergarten teachers, school teachers and support staff in order to meet each clients individual needs. Gosia was born in Krakow, Poland, and is fluent in both English and Polish languages
Andrea Ponce – Paediatric Occupational Therapist
Andrea graduated from La Trobe University in 2010 with a double degree in Occupational Therapy/ Psychological Science.
She has experience in working as a Paediatric Occupational Therapist in private practice, kinder and school settings. She also had the opportunity to work in Santiago/ Chile as an Occupational Therapist at sensory integration infant and child development centres where she gained skills working with various children and their families from different cultural backgrounds. Andrea has experience working with children with a variety of diagnoses including Global Developmental and Intellectual Delays, Autism-Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Angelmans Syndrome, Attention Deficit and Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD), Dyspraxia and Sensory Processing Disorders.
Andrea enjoys working with children and their families to help reach their goals and independence. She helps them in areas including fine and gross motor skills, handwriting, visual perception, motor planning and organizational skills, attention, sensory regulation, and play/ social skills. She takes an interest in using a sensory integration approach in her interventions to help with sensory processing difficulties such as over-sensitivities to sights, sounds, textures, flavours and other sensory inputs, spatial/ body awareness and self-regulation. This approach has also been useful in developing emotional regulation, attention, learning and greater participation in daily life.
James Willy – Psychologist
James has worked at the Department of Education and Training for 8 years focused mainly on cognitive assessment and applications for funding for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Intellectual Disability and Behavioural Difficulties. James has worked at On Track for the last 3 years predominantly supporting social skills groups for primary school age children. James enjoys watching children develop their skills in being friendly and displaying “expected” behaviours with peers and adults. James’ areas of interest include Autism Spectrum Disorder, Anxiety, Cognitive Assessment, Theory of Mind, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Technology, Mindfulness and Positive Psychology.
Yuki Sands – Occupational Therapist
Yuki has over 15 years experience working as a paediatric Occupational Therapist in Japan and Melbourne. During her early career in Japan Yuki worked as part of child developmental support teams in community health centres and hospitals. Since moving to Melbourne in 2010 Yuki has worked in private practices, providing occupational therapy service to children and their families in a variety of settings including kindergarten, childcare, primary school, and home visits. In addition to individual therapy she has also been involved in facilitating group programs collaborating with other professionals such as Speech Pathologists, Psychologists and qualified teachers. Yuki has experience working with children with a range of diagnoses including Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, ADHD, Global Developmental Delay, handwriting and fine/gross motor difficulties, learning disability, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and various other developmental or behavioural difficulties.
Yuki is passionate about creating engaging, play based activities. She would like children to have a fun and successful experience in her sessions while assisting them in improving their fine and gross motor skills, self care skills, play and social skills.
Brigita Balbata – Speech Pathologist & Primary Teacher
Brigita Balbata has over 11 years of paediatric Speech Pathology experience. She has worked in both the UK and Australia with individuals from birth to adulthood. She has completed a postgraduate certificate in Sensory integration and more recently a masters in Primary Teaching.
Brigita enjoys working with children of various abilities and has a wide amount of experience working with children who have additional needs. She is experienced in alternative and augmentative communication modes and is PROMPT trained. Her enthusiasm and passion makes for a fun session!
Yiorgo Sgourakis – Psychologist
Yiorgs has been working with children and adolescents for nearly 15 years, having previously worked with young offenders through organisations including the Department of Health and Human Services (Youth Justice), Youth Projects (YNOT program), and Australian Community Support Organisation (PSBS). For the past 5 years, Yiorgs has been employed as a Psychologist with the Department of Education & Training, working at both primary and secondary schools in the Manningham & Boroondara regions. During this period, he provided counselling services for the students, and regularly undertook psycho-educational assessments. Yiorgs was also required to undertake assessments and write and submit applications on behalf of students who were potentially eligible for funding under the Program for Students with Disabilities. A significant part of his role at the schools related to managing difficult behaviours in the classroom, which often involved working with students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and Behavioural Disorders, working closely with teachers and parents in the process. This position of employment with the Department also required Yiorgs to regularly collaborate with other external professionals (e.g. Speech Pathologists, Psychologists & Paediatricians) who were providing additional support for students at these schools. Yiorgs developed and delivered a number of Personal Development Training sessions for staff at each of these schools, relating to areas such as managing students with anxiety, school refusal, and suicidal ideation. He also carried out several sessions for parents and students relating to topics of interest to these groups, including depression, anxiety, resilience and mental fitness. Yiorgs has an interest in the areas of ASD, anxiety and depression, and is passionate about working with children and adolescents to help them confront and overcome difficult life situations, and to develop both resilience as well as a positive level of psychological wellbeing that they will be able to independently maintain.
Angela Sharp – Education Consultant & Learning Intervention Specialist
Angela is a qualified teacher and is fully registered with the Victorian Institute of Teaching. Her teaching qualifications include a Bachelor of Teaching (Honours), as well as recently completing a Master of Education specialising in Literacy. Additionally, Angela holds a Bachelor of Health Sciences degree whereby she completed units of study in Psychology, Disability Studies and Health Promotion. Angela has 17 years of experience teaching in a variety of schools in Melbourne, and at well-regarded international schools.
Angela’s philosophy of effective educational practices centers around combining engaging teaching and learning strategies that have clear outcomes with executing a flexible program that differentiates for individual needs. Angela has a breadth of experiences across a range of year levels and is skilled in implementing a range of supportive learning strategies. Her experience of working in numerous international schools allowed her to develop educational connections across the world and develop her understanding of best practices implemented in a variety of countries.
Angela has been a member of the leadership team at a range of schools, such as being the Team Leader of the Foundation – Year 2 area at two different schools. This role involved leading teams of teachers in the planning, development, implementation, assessment and reporting of the curriculum. She has also held other positions of responsibility, such as being the Literacy Team Leader that involved co-ordinating the English program across the school. Angela has also presented to staff on best practices related to implementing effective literacy strategies. Additionally, Angela has also been a member of the school council, as well as mentored numerous teachers.
Furthermore, Angela has effectively planned, implemented and assessed a range of Individual Learning Plans (ILPs) in order to modify the curriculum to assist with catering for the needs of students at multiple schools. Implementing this process involved working collaboratively with psychologists, speech therapists, principals and parents in order to best support individual children.
Emma Harty – Education Consultant & Learning Intervention Specialist
Emma is a qualified teacher and is fully registered with the Victorian Institute of Teaching. She has completed a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology major), Bachelor of Education (Primary) and a Master of Learning Intervention (Specific Learning Difficulties). Emma has over 15 years teaching experience and has taught in a range of schools both here and in the UK. She is also trained in a number of evidence-based literacy programs, including The Spalding Method and Sounds-Write. Emma has a breadth of experience across a range of year levels and is skilled in implementing a range of supportive learning strategies.
Kayleigh Flaks – Education Consultant & Learning Intervention Specialist
Kayleigh is a qualified teacher and is fully registered with the Victorian Institute of Teaching. She has studied at Monash University and completed a Bachelor of Primary Education (with honours) and a Master of Education with a Specialisation in Inclusion and Special Education. Over the past five years Kayleigh has been working with a large range of students in Primary and Secondary school.
Kayleigh is extremely passionate about creating engaging, safe and interactive learning environments. It is her priority that all individuals can enjoy and partake in learning which is relevant, purposeful and transferable. Kayleigh incorporates a range of effective evidence-based pedagogy into all her lessons, utilising teaching and learning strategies which are flexible and differentiates learners’ individual needs, goals and desired outcomes. Additionally, Kayleigh strives to provide learners with lifelong academic, organisational and emotional skills while developing their confidence, self-worth and intrinsic motivation.
Kayleigh’s philosophy is that every individual is capable of success, growth and achievement when provided with the correct tools and strategies to assist them.
Elana Melzak – Education Consultant & Learning Intervention Specialist
Elana is a primary school teacher, who is fully registered with the Victorian Institute of Teaching.
She has had many years experience working at independent schools across Victoria. She has also undertaken positions within these school settings in the Curriculum Support Department and as an Integration Aide. Her passion has always been working with children with additional needs, whether that be educational/ academic only or also combined with social/ emotional/ behavioural issues.
She loves nothing more than working with children that unfortunately have been labelled as “ unteachable”.
Supporting and encouraging a child to reach their full potential brings enormous joy and pride to her.
She also relishes the opportunity to work collaboratively with home and school to provide the right environment for success.
Elana began her career at an Educational and Psychological Consulting Firm, working with children of all ages. She ultimately became the Director of Educational Services with a team of forty staff under her direction. She feels it is so fitting to be returning to a clinic style environment, facilitating social skills and educational workshops.
Her underlying belief system is that “children are here to teach us. We just need to be open to receiving those precious learning lessons”. We as educators no longer impart knowledge. We facilitate learning and growth.