Independent Speech. School-Based Services. Information Packet

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1 Independent Speech School-Based Services Information Packet

2 Hello, My name is Stephanie Barry, I am the founder of Independent Speech. This company was founded to help fill the need for speech pathologists in schools that were having trouble finding qualified therapists. This goal has been achieved through our online service delivery model. Independent Speech will match your school with a dedicated, highly trained speechpathologist who has received additional training in providing high quality online services so they are able to meet the needs of your students. Students enjoy the interactive nature of our activities and enjoy interacting with their speech pathologist. They actually look forward to their speech therapy sessions and this motivation helps accelerate their success! Independent Speech is accountable to you and your school. We provide you with a password protected online folder where you can access schedules, daily progress notes, treatment plans and see what activities our students are working on in their homework folders. In addition, we are able to set up teacher folders for those teachers who have students receiving speech therapy. These folders are set-up based on your specific needs. This packet provides you with an overview of Independent Speech and how we are ready and able to serve you and your students! If you have any questions or need any additional information please feel free to contact me at any time either by phone at or by to Thank you, Stephanie Barry, M.S., CCC-SLP Founder

3 What We Do at Independent Speech Independent Speech provides Speech-Language Pathologists to school districts who want to bring high-quality speech therapy services to their students but are having difficulty hiring staff. Our online service delivery model removes many of the barriers to finding high-quality speech pathologists including geographical, budget and staffing barriers. At Independent Speech our therapists login to their therapy room and can see students in your schools with ease. Each of our sessions are held in real-time video and audio using a web-cam and headset. This allows the student and therapist to see, hear and interact with each other as if they were sitting across the table. Independent Speech provides everything the speech pathologist needs to hold effective, engaging therapy sessions as well as the tools they need for effective caseload management. In addition to providing ongoing speech therapy services we also provide comprehensive evaluations, student screenings and consultations with teachers and other staff. Our goal is to provide you with the highest quality speech therapy delivered by highly trained and skills speech pathologists resulting in an optimal speech therapy experience for your students.

4 How Does On-Line Speech Therapy Work? Before therapy begins, we will collaborate with you to learn about your specific needs, we will demonstrate how to access your therapy room and provide you with all the materials needed for therapy, such as supplying the web-cam(s) and headset(s). All you need to provide is a computer in a quiet location that has high-speed internet access. We prefer you access our program using Internet Explorer or Safari. Our program works with both IBM and MAC computers. There are no specific technical requirements as our program operates over the internet. When it is time for therapy, your students will logon to your school's therapy room from your dedicated page on our website. Once logged on, your students will connect with their speech pathologist for an exciting therapy session using activities found in our activity center, which currently houses more than 500 interactive activities. Both the student and the speech pathologist are able to manipulate the activities using the computer's mouse and keyboard. These activities are tailored to meet each individual's specific needs and ability level. We are able to schedule our sessions before, during or after school, working with you to determine what works best for each student. After therapy, you are able to login to your password protected online folder to view daily progress reports, treatment plans and other reports such as evaluation reports. You are also able to view student schedules and homework activities through this folder. Each student also receives an online folder. Students can login to this folder from any computer with internet access. This folder contains practice activities that they are able to complete between sessions, which helps to promote and maintain progress. Parents are able to login to view progress reports and have access to their child's speech pathologist to ask questions about therapy, the practice activities, the reports or anything else they are concerned about.

5 Our Service Delivery Model Our primary focus is your students. As your speech therapy service provider we will work with you to implement the best plan your school(s) and determine the parameters of our service. Your Speech pathologist can visit your school(s) to meet staff and establish connections. We will build a relationship with our main contacts at the school to ensure everything is ready for high quality speech therapy. We can provide packets to be sent home informing parents of how online speech therapy works and how it is going to benefit their child. We can also provide information packets for you to distribute to your teachers that provide basic information about our services and let them know how to scheduling screenings or consultations, or just connect with your speech pathologist. We will work with the teachers and other staff to arrange the best schedule for services. We will hold a trial session to ensure your computer system is up and running and ready to hold exciting online therapy sessions. You will have 24-hour access to our dedicated technical support team in the event of a technical issue. We provide our services to you in four different ways: 1) Therapy and Evaluation Services ~ We provide high quality online speech therapy services. ~ We are able to provide both individual and group therapy sessions ~ We provide comprehensive evaluations and student screenings 2) Training and Consultations ~ We are able to provide teacher trainings or support staff trainings on a variety of subjects. We will consult with teachers and support staff as needed to answer any questions they may have to help them better understand our services and how speech therapy can help their students succeed. 3) Meeting Attendance ~ Your SLP can attend all meetings such as IEP, MET or SIT meetings. This can be done through your therapy room or a phone conference. 4) Our practice Folders ~ Your students not only receive face-to-face speech therapy but we also provide practice activities that they can complete at home, at school such as at computer centers, or anywhere there is a computer with internet access. This helps motivate the student to work on their speech-language skills outside of therapy which will help them generalize these skills and promotes and maintains overall progress.

6 Who is your Speech-Language Pathologist? Your SLP is chosen based on your student's needs and your scheduling concerns. All our SLP's have worked in school districts prior to coming to Independent Speech so they understand how to provide appropriate speech therapy within a school environment. These SLP's care about providing the highest quality speech therapy services possible to help you students meet their speech-language needs. Your Speech-Language Pathologist will hold the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association, and a license to practice speech therapy in your state. In addition, they participate in continuing education activities each month to ensure they are learning the newest techniques and strategies and that they are continually gaining new knowledge they can use to help your students.

7 Factors for Student Success For your students to receive the ultimate benefit from online speech therapy, they need to possess the following skills: 1) Be able to maintain attention for at least 10 minutes with some redirection to the task. We are able to adjust the length of our sessions to meet each student's needs. 2) The student must be able to maintain a sitting or standing position so that the SLP is able to see the child's face during the session. 3) They need the ability to follow basic instructions and have behavior skills that support their participation in therapy. We do work with behavior plans for those students who benefit from this type of support.

8 Why Choose Independent Speech? There are many reasons to choose Independent Speech as your speech therapy provider. Here are the top ten reasons: 1) You have access to a dedicated Speech Pathologist to provide therapy to your students. 2) Your SLP is dedicated to educating and consulting with your teachers and staff to help them understand our services and speech therapy in general. 3) You are able to provide high-quality speech therapy to all your students no matter where they are or how many students need our services. 4) We are able to provide services for full-time, part-time and temporary positions. Our service is scalable, you can make adjustments at any time to meet your changing needs. 5) We are continually updating our activity center to ensure there are new and exciting activities to work on during each therapy session. 6) We are continually monitoring our system to ensure the best online speech therapy experience possible. 7) You are able to login to your folder to monitor student progress, view schedules, etc. at any time. 8) You save on material and mileage costs as we provide all the needed materials and are able to see students in a variety of schools or locations with ease. 9) Parents will be happy with the progress their children are making and the ability to view progress reports and have access to activities so they can help their child work on their speech-language needs. 10) There is more and more evidence that shows online speech therapy is as effective as traditional face-to-face therapy.

9 The Cost of Service We will provide you with a detailed time sheet outlining the number of hours spent on each activity to show how the speech pathologist is utilizing their time. We will arrange with you on when this time sheet is submitted as we are aware that payment schedules may differ between districts. We do not require any set amount of hours per week thus we are able to provide the amount of services your school needs at any given time. We offer scalable services so if we need to provide additional service time one week or month and less the next week or month we are able to do so with ease. We will provide you with an account manager that you can connect with directly if you have any billing or payment questions. We look forward to the opportunity to discuss our fees with you personally.

10 What About ASHA? ASHA has issued the following position statement in regards to online speech therapy (also known as telepractice). Telepractice is the application of telecommunications technology to deliver professional servicesat a distance by linking clinician to client, or clinician to clinician for assessment, intervention,and/or consultation. It is the position of the American Speech-Language- Hearing Association (ASHA) that telepractice (telehealth) is an appropriate model of service delivery for the profession of speech-language pathology. Telepractice may be used to overcome barriers of access to services caused by distance, unavailability of specialists and/or subspecialists, and impaired mobility. Telepractice offers the potential to extend clinical services to remote, rural, and underserved populations, and to culturally and linguistically diverse populations. For more information on telepractice from ASHA visit:

11 Efficacy of Online Speech Therapy Services Many studies have been conducted showing that online speech therapy services and evaluations are as effective as services provided face-to-face. We have found this to be true when working with our students as well. In the schools we are currently working with we have graduated several students from therapy, reduced the needed therapy time for students as they have mastered many of their goals and have had many teachers and parents report that they have seen the students effectively use the skills they learned in therapy in other situations. Students enjoy working on the computer and with the activities in our activity center. They enjoy interacting with our speech pathologists and because of this are willing and eager to participate in therapy sessions. This enthusiasm for attending and participating in each speech therapy session increases student's progress during and outside of therapy.

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