A couple of months ago, we wrote in our blog about telepractice, or online speech therapy, and how we are using it to benefit our private speech therapy clients. Well, we have decided to expand our telepractice to include children who get their speech therapy at school, to help ensure that every child gets the speech therapy they need.
Why Do Schools Need Speech Therapists?
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) require that public schools offer services, at no cost, to students who have been determined to have a speech or language impairment (or any other eligible disability). If a child is eligible for speech therapy services at school, and has speech therapy as a part of their Individualized Education Plan (IEP), their school is legally required to provide this service.
Why Would Schools Use Online Speech Therapy, Rather Than Have a Therapist on Staff?
While most school districts staff licensed Speech Language Pathologists to provide therapy in their local schools, some are out of compliance with the law because they don’t have a qualified speech therapist on hand for children in need of therapy. This may be because they have had difficulty filling the position because of the school’s location (which is sometimes the case in rural or inner city areas), or simply because the position was suddenly vacated, and the school has not yet been able find a qualified replacement.
To ensure that a school district remains in compliance, Lil’ Chit-Chat is now offering online speech therapy with our licensed Speech Language Pathologists. The beauty of online therapy, is that we can work with any school, regardless of where they are located or where our speech therapist is located, as long as the therapist is licensed to work in the state in which the school is located, as well as the state in which he or she is located.
Even schools that are currently in compliance with the law can benefit from contracting with Lil’ Chit-Chat for online therapy because it allows them to provide another option to parents of children with speech and language delays—one that doesn’t involve their children missing class to attend therapy. Contracting with Lil’ Chit-Chat for online speech therapy can also benefit smaller districts that only have a few children in need of speech therapy services, since then they wouldn’t need to staff a full-time therapist.
In addition, online therapy is a great option for students not attending their local public school, such as those attending an online school, or those in charter schools or private schools who would have to leave their campuses during the day to attend therapy sessions somewhere else. For these types of students, teletherapy can be an extremely convenient option. Therapy sessions can be tailored to the students’ schedules and allow them to not miss out on large amounts of class time.
Find Out More About Online Speech Therapy for School Children
If you’re a parent who thinks online speech therapy would be a good fit for your child (maybe you find your student is falling behind because he or she is missing class, or perhaps group speech therapy doesn’t suit your child’s personality), don’t hesitate to contact your local school district and request that they contract with Lil’ Chit-Chat to provide online therapy for your child. If you’re a school or school district that could benefit from working with a quality online speech therapist, contact us at Lil’ Chit-Chat. We’d love to talk with you about the various options available and how we can help your school or school district be in compliance, while still providing quality, individualized speech therapy services.