Speech Therapy in the Classroom

by Bud
(Bolivar NY)

I have done "push-out" speech therapy for a long time. The trend is push-in therapy.

I am at a loss for what to actually do while in the classroom.

What specific things am I to do?

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May 07, 2016
Push in therapy
by: Anonymous

I have been in speech therapy for 18 years. I have worked in SNFs, doing home care for 0-3s for 6 years, working at 5 different districts with neurotypical kids, and a few years in spec ed programs.

This year I have had the push in therapy policy issue. The problem I have with it is they make it impossible to do. The kids are put in the back of the room. The materials are very modified and most times they have no idea what is being discussed.

I have had a hearing impaired child with downs syndrome and oral motor issues in the back of a classroom of 35 during a lecture, and I am supposed to be able to work on his articulation??

Some teachers resent the intrusion or don't like having our kids with disabilities there. Some have challenging behaviors. OT and PT use manipulatives, see them at their lockers or during bathroom or lunch time.

They walk them in the hallways with equipment.

Speech therapy doesn't have that advantage.

I think its most effective and they progress a lot faster 1:1. I don't even know where to begin. Its been a really frustrating year! The other district therapists just tell me its a "broken system" or it doesn't work.

But the expectation is still there. There is no training offered. I think it creates a really a bad situation for the kids and the speech therapists.

Suggestions Please!!!!

Dec 23, 2012
Agree with above comment
by: Anonymous

Agreed! Thanks for saying what many of us in the schools have been thinking for a long time!

Dec 03, 2012
I feel old...but maybe experienced
by: Linda

I love the site...thanks.

I have been doing therapy for over 25 years. We didn't call it push in or push out. It was inclusion.

And it will continue as we get less funding. Teachers are asked to do so much for their kids, but with your help, they can do more than you will ever do in 30 minutes 2 times a week.

Please, if nothing else, remember that kiddo's need to be able to have a peer group, and taking them out (even to the back of the room...) takes that away.

It is very difficult to co-teach with a teacher.

She has expectations of you and until you decide (outside of the class time) that you have something to offer each other, it just will be a struggle.

There are ways to make it work and it is never easy...just keep trying.

Nov 10, 2012
Push-in for all.....I don't think so.
by: Claudia Cruz-Fuller, SLP

I like this site!

One district where I worked believed in push-in services for all students, regardless of the severity of their disability.

The sad thing was that the SPED director in charge of the department and pushing in SLPs was not a SLP or a sped teacher, it was a psychologist.

I left the district after my first year.

In my opinion, push in therapy benefits speech and language students with mild delays. The SLP is expected to run a lesson along with the classroom teacher as support for the entire class; it could be a 30 to 60- minute lesson.

I've done it for early childhood and lower grades.

However, in some cases the classroom teacher takes this time as "a break from her class" and leaves the classroom for that time.

A thread mentioned working at a table in the back of the classroom as an example of push-in therapy, but is not because the students are pulled in a group separate from the class.

Students with Moderate to severe delays may also benefit from these interventions, but their difficulty is so grand d that they get lost in a large class...that's why they are serviced in a small group setting.

A few years ago, in CO, the trend was that all SPED financial resources were going toward push-in, along with RTI.

I still do mainly pull-out.

Nov 01, 2012
push in
by: Anonymous

We have been asked to do push in as well in our district. My most severe kids are still pulled out. However, when I go in the room I still do my own thing, that is what the student needs.

I have a table and my students come to me in there and we work on his or her goals. Sure at times I can do whole group with the teacher or by myself but it isn't like I just sit there.

If you can become part of a team you can see how your services of push in not only help your students but others in the room. I didn't think I would like it but I do.

Not all experiences have been great but more have been, it depends on how you and the teacher perceive your and their responsibilities.

Oct 27, 2012
SLP roles
by: Andrew

As an SLP we have to expect a lot of therapy settings. It is is always part of our principle to help others who needs our services.

Oct 24, 2012
How to push when they're pulling you in so many directions!
by: Karen

I feel your pain! I don't get why they want us in the classrooms interrupting the teacher and wasting the child's time.

I believe in going into self-contained classes and doing lessons in conjunction with the teacher to train her to support language. However, what many don't understand is that there are things that ONLY a speech path can do in a school.

We are the ONLY one who can treat speech and language disorders, and it's not only stupid, but also a waste of our resources to make us do other things. There is a HUGE shortage of speech paths, and the schools would do well to understand that we should be using our time doing what we do best...treating speech and language disorders!

It wasn't until I got into private practice and began working individually with children in their homes that I realized how easily and fast I could fix a child!!!

It is miraculous!

After 34 years of SLOW therapy in the schools, I realize just how much of our time my time they wasted having me do trivial stuff such as watching kids get off the bus or eat meals, and going to meaningless meetings.

The schools need to wise up, step back, get the Federal government out of our way, and let us do our jobs!

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