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you are here:   Special Education  >>  Related Services  >>  Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy

Role of School-based Occupational Therapist

School-based Occupational Therapists (OTs) work collaboratively with the student's IEP team and participate in evaluation, program development, planning, intervention, and monitoring the outcome of the intervention.
School-based OTs assess the fine motor, visual motor, sensory motor, and self-care skills of students with disabilities. They may evaluation the use of classroom tools and visual responses to the classroom sensory environment.
School-based OTs help define student strengths and needs and their impact on school performance. Interventions may or may not be provided directly with the student. Collaborating with school staff to modify both the student's environment and their daily school activities is always a part of school therapy.
School-based OTs help train school staff on ways to incorporate interventions and practice of motor skills into the classroom schedule.

Occupational Therapy Service Delivery

If occupational therapy is written into the IEP, services may be provided in multiple environments including the classroom, cafeteria, hallway, computer lab or gymnasium.
Occupational Therapy is delivered in such a way that allows the student to continue his/her daily education schedule, with the least amount of interruption possible, and the least amount of attention directed toward his/her disability.
Dismissal from School Therapy
The decision to discontinue therapy is made by the IEP team. This may occur when the student is no longer eligible for special education ; when other members of the IEP team can provide necessary interventions; or when the student can perform school tasks without therapeutic intervention.
Limitations of School-based Occupational Therapy Services
Related services are provided only if required to help a child with a disability to benefit from his/her special education program. A medical diagnosis or motor delay confirmed by evaluation results do not automatically indicate a need for school therapy. There must also be an adverse impact on the student's performance or access to their education. School-based OT is not intended to replace clinic-based OT. Related services will be provided only when identified problem areas directly affect educational performance that cannot be addressed appropriately by the school staff.


For more information about Occupational Therapy services, call
701-323-4270


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