To provide school districts across south central Pennsylvania consistent access to online speech and occupational therapy services, the Capital Area Intermediate Unit (IU) has partnered with PresenceLearning for online speech therapy services for K-12 students. The new partnership grants the Capital Area IU’s 24 districts access to online therapy services in the face of persistent shortages of speech-language pathologists and occupational therapists.
The Capital Area IU, a Pennsylvania regional educational service agency, provides a wide variety of services to its districts in Cumberland, Dauphin, Perry, and northern York counties. By pre-vetting and negotiating technology services, like PresenceLearning, Capital Area IU helps districts meet student needs despite staffing shortages. So far, approximately 60 students are receiving online speech therapy services for the 2013-2014 school year.
To implement the services within their districts, the districts’ Special Education administrators must identify students needing services and register them with the Capital Area IU. Districts can register students in groups at the beginning of the school year or individually throughout the year as necessary. In addition to delivering online therapy services, PresenceLearning can provide speech-language pathology assessments (initial, triennial and dismissal) online as well as write Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and manage student cases.
“We keep high-quality and low-cost in mind for the services we offer,” said Mark Hennes, special projects supervisor at the Capital Area IU. “By implementing PresenceLearning’s therapy through our IU, districts will have access to much-needed services that have been vetted for quality and price. We hope that other IUs will see how feasible online therapy is to implement and spread awareness about its value to districts statewide.”