Teletherapy Is A Lifeline For Special Education Students

,teletherapy for special education

When it became apparent to the Office of Student Support Services in Sumter School District that the traditional school model would likely not be in place this year, they drafted a “must have” list to guide their search for a teletherapy solution for special education. Angela McLeod, the lead Speech Language Pathologist for the county, wanted a solution that their own staff of therapists could quickly learn and successfully use. It needed to work for speech and language, mental health, occupational and physical therapy, as well as for administering assessments and diagnostics. She wanted technical training and to ensure continued support. And since their therapists were used to face-to-face sessions with students, therapy materials and tools to prepare them for virtual therapy services were also necessary.  

“The team at E-Therapy have not only met those initial lists of must have items but they have exceeded them,” McLeod wrote.

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E-Therapy: designed to meet student’s needs

E-Therapy is an advanced teletherapy company that provides online services to PreK-12 schools across the United States. Much like Sumter County’s need, brought on by Covid-19, E-Therapy was founded on a need to reach more students.

Travel less, serve more

In the mid-2000s, Diana Parafiniuk, an SLP in Arizona, spent hours each week driving from school to school in rural parts of the state. She knew there was a better way to reach under served students, so in 2009, she founded E-Therapy. Her vision was to help PreK-12 schools remotely access speech and language services using teletherapy. Today, E-Therapy continues that vision of providing the highest quality services and reaching students and schools across the United States.

Schools send out an SOS

Now that many schools have turned to virtual learning, E-Therapy’s teletherapy expertise has provided a lifeline to special education teams striving to ensure their students do not regress or fall behind on their speech and language goals. The company’s account managers provide expansive teletherapy training and access to resources therapists can use to motivate and engage the students they serve. 

“E-Therapy had been a lifesaver for PreK -12th grade students with disabilities receiving speech-language therapy and other related services before the pandemic,” said Parafiniuk. “Now that we find ourselves with a requirement for compensatory time, E-Therapy’s online therapy services are more important than ever.”

Helping school therapists manage compensatory time

E-Therapy developed its newest teletherapy solution, eSMART, as a direct response to Covid-19. It helps school’s SPED teams provide students with compensatory minutes. Efficiencies include session monitoring, detailed data tracking, and Individual Education Program (IEP) reporting.

E-Therapy’s account managers train school-based teams to get virtual sessions up and running quickly. They continue to offer support as the team works to compensate for learning losses their students may have. 

Speech therapists, as well as mental health counselors, have access to a vast library of digital resources. These tools are proven to engage students and provide positive outcomes to advance academic success.

“eSMART meets the needs of special education programs right now,” said Parafiniuk. “Its ease-of-use has revolutionized how speech therapists and school administrators track and monitor their student’s IEP speech session progress. Therapists and administrators can see real-time clinical data that charts student progress at a glance.”

Overcoming the ultimate challenge

Sumter County’s Office of Student Support Services went into this school year feeling like it was going to be the ultimate challenge for their therapy service providers.

“The onboarding, training and support provided to our district has been outstanding,” said Ms. McLeod. “The team at E-Therapy made the transition to teletherapy and virtual learning much smoother for the staff, students, and parents.” 

Need a complete teletherapy solution for your school-based therapists? Or is your school district facing a shortage of therapists? Your unique problems require a unique solution. Let us help. Manage compensatory time with E-Therapy’s help.