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Career Story: Speech Pathologist For A Public School District

Speech Pathologist For A Public School District

Job Title: Speech/Language Pathologist

Type of Company: I work for a public school district.

Education: BS and MS in Communication Disorders, College of Saint Rose

Previous Experience: I began working as a speech therapist at a small private school for children with autism. Then, I worked for a private practice as a speech and language pathologist. Most currently, I am employed as a speech and language for a public school district.

Job Tasks: In my job as a speech and language pathologist in a public school setting, I work with students ranging in age from 5-16 at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. My job responsibilities consist of teaching or working with the students in a group or individually, evaluating student's needs in the area of speech, language, processing, and social skills, writing evaluation reports and individual education plans or (IEP's), observing students in their classes, and consulting or talking with their teachers to see how they are performing in their classroom environment. In addition, I attend weekly team meetings, which consist of the student's parents, teacher, and other therapists who work with the student to discuss how the student is performing in school and to make necessary recommendations or changes to his/her education plan if needed.

Each student who receives speech and language services, has an individual education plan (IEP) which includes goals and objects to fit that student's area of need. My job is to work with the student on these goals and objectives to improve his/her level of functioning in that area of need. The IEP goals are worked on for that school year and are modified or changed as the student meets or masters his/her objectives. Students continue with speech and language services until they no longer need assistance in the area that was previously a concern.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job includes working with the students and watching them progress and make improvements in their speech and language. I also enjoy working with other teachers as a team to help improve student's skills. The worst part of my job includes the amount of paper work we have to complete in a short amount of time.

Job Tips:
1. Advice I would give anyone pursuing a job in this field would be to make sure you are an organized person, who is able to manage many different students on your caseload which at times can be up to 60 students a week.

2. Another tip would be for you to have excellent written language skills as you will have to write many reports and evaluations that other teachers, parents, therapists, and administrators will be reading.

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