Close Server: KOPWWW05 | Not logged in


Welcome to Health Care POV | sign in | join | help
in Search

School Setting Question

Last post 12-19-2010, 10:12 AM by Tonya. 3 replies.
Previous Discussion Next Discussion Sort Posts:
  •  11-24-2009, 3:11 PM

    School Setting Question

    Hi!

     I am a new grad and have been working in the school setting since Sept. '09. As a school-based therapist I am an indirect service provider for the kids that I am to see. My question is this. How involved should I get in their care? I feel like I am not doing much of anything and that my skills as an OT are not being utilized the way I'd like. The special education teachers are often already using the techniques that I would recommend so most of the time I just observe and make sure that there are no other new concerns. The main thing that I do is consult for handwriting or complete assessments. Otherwise, I feel really useless. Am i missing something? Does anyone have any insight as to how I can get more out of this experience until I can get a different job? I love working with kids, but this no contact, no intervention, no direct service is really depressing - especially when the teachers, PTs and SLPs are all working with the kiddos in a more direct manner. Also, I did not have any direct training or field work experience to go off so kind of going in blind as far as job goes (paperwork, organizing caseload, interventions, provision of service, etc.). Thanks!!  :)

  •  12-09-2009, 6:22 PM

    Re: School Setting Question

    I am sorry to hear that you feel discouraged.  I've been a school therapist for some 15 yrs; I am rarely bored on the job!  Are you allowed to pull students out of class??  is it inclusive only?  In either case, I still see kids 1:1 or 2:1.  I work in the severely handicapped classrooms with the kids - I bring materials in that will accomplish what I wish to work on.  With other students, i pull them individually out of class to work on specific issues, such as increasing upper extremity strength, crossing midline, working on inhand manipulatives to improve  overall fine motor manipulation skills that then translate into improved handwriting, etc.  I work in about 6 different schools at this time aged 3-21 yrs old.  I work with both staff and director of Special Education to let them know what I am there for, what I am working on and what OT is in a school setting.  I do inservices for school teachers to let them know what I am expecting kids to do at what age and that I do more than teach handwriting (I use Handwriting without Tears as it has multisensory approach when I have to do writing); it is my job to figure out WHY the kiddo can't write.  Let me know what I can do to help - sounds very frustrating!!  Deb
  •  10-14-2010, 2:33 PM

    Re: School Setting Question

    Hi!

     Thanks for the reply - sorry for the delayed response. The district I work for has an indirect service approach so I am a consultant to the special education teacher/case manager. I evaluate the child and make recommendations - though I do not write goals/objectives - I can only offer suggestions. When working with the child, I observe and tell the sped teacher/case manager what I am seeing and what I would do if I was working with the child directly. They then are to implement my recommedations, if they want to, in order to address the goals they've identified they'd like my expertise for. Every once in a while I get to work hands-on with the child, but this is very limited and usually only if some one is gone or I'm completing a complex intervention or evaluation. I really would love to find a new job where I feel that I am needed.

  •  12-19-2010, 10:12 AM

    Re: School Setting Question

    Your setting does sound really frustrating.  When I first started with the school district, I felt like I wasn't really doing much too.  It sounds like you are not supposed to pull them out and work with them one on one.  Maybe you should do it anyway, because you will get a better feel for what the kids are able to do and what they need to work on.  You will feel better about what you are doing too.

    Tonya
    http://www.therapyfunzone.com