Understanding the Identification Process for Speech/language Services.
Children can be referred for a speech/language screening when a teacher and/or parent have a concern about a student. A teacher/parent conference is held to discuss observations and or concerns as it relates to the students' speech / language skills. The teacher may discuss any interventions she has previously tried with the area of concern.
The teacher then contacts the Speech Language Pathologist to request that a speech/language screen be scheduled. A "screening permission" form is sent home, prior to the assessment, to request permission to administer the speech/language screen. The parent must check "yes" or "no" to give permission to administer the screen, sign their name, and return the form to the classroom teacher.
After we receive permission from the parent to screen their child, the therapist administers a short speech/language screening. During the speech/language screening, the Speech/Language Pathologist observes how well the child understands and uses language, as well as, whether there are any sound (articulation) errors, fluency, voice, or hearing problems.
The speech /language pathologist also collects the following information: social history, hearing screening, vision screening, and student observations across settings. All information is then presented to the school assistance team. If the child demonstrates sound errors, language, voice, or fluency problems which are not developmentally appropriate and warrant further assessment, the school assistance team refers on to the IEP committee. The teacher is asked to complete a referral for speech.
Referral and Evaluation
Once the pathologist receives the referral form, the IEP committee decides whether there is a need for further assessment. If the committee decides that further assessment is indicated, then parent permission is requested to assess their child. The parent has the right to grant or withhold permission for the assessment.
When permission is received, the assessment is initiated. Upon completion, the parent is invited to another IEP meeting to discuss the evalution results.
IEP Committee meeting
Upon review of the evaluation results, the IEP committee determines whether the child meets North Carolina State Guidelines to receive services in the Speech-Language Impaired program, needs specially designed instruction, and if there is a negative impact on the educational/ social performance. An IEP (individual education plan) is developed if the student meets the above criteria.
The parent then either gives or denies permission for their child to receive speech therapy services.