The school year is well underway, and you may have received a letter from your child’s school requesting permission for your child to complete a speech and language screening with a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP). We know this can cause stress and anxiety for families.

Many children need speech therapy for a wide variety of reasons, so you aren’t alone! Speech Therapy addresses troublesome areas related to hearing impairments, cognitive or developmental delays, or weak oral muscles. It’s meant to provide tools to improve communication skills.

Here’s what to expect:

1. After signing off on the speech and language screening, an evaluation will be scheduled. This is a quick and informal way to assess your child’s current speech and language skills to see if further formal testing is necessary.

2. If formal testing is necessary, this test will be completed during your child’s regular school day. Once your child has completed the formal testing, a team comprised of your child’s teacher, the SLP, Case Manager, Special Education Facilitator, and any other individuals with relevant information to share would meet for a meeting. This is most often referred to as an “eligibility meeting.” During this meeting, the SLP and any other provider that conducted testing (OT, PT, school psychologist, etc.) would present the test they used, scores, and information regarding your child’s performance. Then, a determination of eligibility for services would be made.

3. If your child does qualify for in-school for speech therapy services, the SLP would recommend specific goals to target areas that challenge your little one most, as well as specify service delivery. Services may be provided in a variety of settings: group, individual, within the classroom, or in a dedicated speech room. Most often, students are pulled from their class to receive group therapy in a dedicated speech room.

The start of this new adventure may be overwhelming, but know that you have an entire team determined to see your child succeed!

If your child does NOT qualify for school-based service but you feel that your child would benefit from speech therapy, consider reaching out to local private practices that can provide support and resources. If you are located in the Southern New Hampshire area, Speak Easy Speech Therapy is just a call away! (978) 496-9550