Q: Why do you keep saying my child has a speech "disorder"?
A. The reason I say a speech/language/fluency/voice "disorder" instead of "delay" is because delay means that a child's skills are behind typically developing peers and we expect that they will catch up on their own. Using the word "disorder" means that their skills are behind typically developing peers but they will need intervention (speech therapy) to catch up to their peers.
Q: My child didn't qualify for school speech services. Now what?
A. As far as what happens here at school - We will continue to keep our eyes (and ears) on them. If your child's regular education teacher and I think that no improvement has been made over a period of time we may find it necessary to test them again. They may or may not qualify at that time.
As far as what you can do - You are free to explore private therapy if your insurance/financial situation allows for that. If that is not a feasible option due to transportation, finances, or other issues, I am always happy to send home materials students can work on at home.
Q. How will I know how my child is doing in speech?
A. Speech progress reports are sent home with report cards every 9 weeks.
Q. Will we meet do discuss my child's progress in speech?
A. Yes, we will meet once every year to discuss progress and develop a new Individual Education Program (IEP) for your child. You can also meet with me at Parent/Teacher Conferences. You can arrange an ARC (Admissions and Release Committee) meeting any time you feel it is necessary by contacting our Director of Special Education - Amy Switzer.
Q. I got a letter about speech RTI. What is speech RTI?
A. Long Answer - Response to Intervention (RTI) is a process that must be completed before any evaluation for special education (including speech) can occur. It is small group or individualized instruction that is intensive and frequent. The goal is that this intervention may be enough help at risk students on its own and will prevent a special education evaluation from being necessary. For speech, interventions are completed in the classroom and include repetition, modeling, and imitation of sound targets. After speech RTI has been completed (6 weeks), the student will be screened again. If no progress has been made, a speech/language evaluation will be conducted.
Short and Sweet Answer - Your child has been identified as at-risk for a speech/language disorder. They will complete a 6 week program in the classroom to see if extra help will help them catch up. If it has not helped after 6 weeks, they will be evaluated (with your permission) for a speech/language disorder.
What else would you like to know?? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any additional questions.