Explaining the Role of SLPs After I read Barbara Ehren’s “Shout It Out: We Are Critical to Students’ Academic Achievement” in the September ASHA Leader, a lot of her ideas reminded me of thoughts that crossed my mind when I began a new job two years ago. I was the new “speech teacher” in a ... Inbox
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Inbox  |   November 01, 2015
Explaining the Role of SLPs
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School-Based Settings / ASHA News & Member Stories / Inbox
Inbox   |   November 01, 2015
Explaining the Role of SLPs
The ASHA Leader, November 2015, Vol. 20, 4. doi:10.1044/leader.IN2.20112015.4
The ASHA Leader, November 2015, Vol. 20, 4. doi:10.1044/leader.IN2.20112015.4
After I read Barbara Ehren’s “Shout It Out: We Are Critical to Students’ Academic Achievement” in the September ASHA Leader, a lot of her ideas reminded me of thoughts that crossed my mind when I began a new job two years ago. I was the new “speech teacher” in a high school in New York City. Although the teachers were kind and welcoming, I quickly realized that most of the faculty did not know why students came for speech and language services or what exactly my role is in a high school. I saw the need for some education on not only my role, but also on how to differentiate instruction to reach our students with learning difficulties.
I created a professional development presentation accompanied by handouts explaining the skills and strategies we work on (e.g., reading comprehension, defining unknown vocabulary words, writing, language processing). I made suggestions for how teachers can address these areas in every discipline by differentiating their instruction and having a better understanding of students’ learning styles and needs. I received lots of positive feedback and felt that the teachers had a better understanding of my role in increasing academic achievement. This discussion improved collaboration during push-in sessions and teachers came to me with questions regarding specific students and their needs.
Ilyse Leibowitz, Wantagh, New York

Thank you for your feedback. Clearly, the role of school-based speech-language pathologists in students’ academic achievement, as well as the terms used to describe the professionals, are critical issues to many ASHA members. It’s helpful to see how members are addressing these issues in their own work settings.

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November 2015
Volume 20, Issue 11