SOESD / Special Education / Orthopedically Impaired
The Southern Oregon Education Service District provides physical and occupational therapy services to school districts in Jackson, Josephine, and Klamath counties. Under the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA), physical therapy and occupational therapy are called “related services.” Related services are designed to assist a student to benefit from his/her special education program. School districts are required to provide special education to students who have both a documented disability and who need specially designed instruction. Thus PTs and OTs design programs or provide technical assistance concerning the motor needs of a student in his/her school setting.
A motor delay or a medical diagnosis confirmed by an evaluation does not automatically indicate a need for school therapy. There must be an adverse impact on a student’s performance or access to his/her education. School therapy must deal primarily with the impact the disability has on student function in the education program. A student who may have a suspected disability can be evaluated to determine if he/she is eligible for “special education” services. In addition a referral for physical or occupational therapy may be appropriate to determine if this service may help the student benefit from his/her special education program.
The Southern Oregon Education Service District also provides services to students who are severely orthopedically impaired. This program is state-funded and is known as the Regional Program for the Orthopedically Impaired. Physical and occupational therapists serve severely motorically impaired students in the school setting. Therapists provide consultation and instruction related to equipment needs and specialized procedures for lifting, feeding, or physical management.
Generally, school therapists provide services in four categories:
- School therapists evaluate the sensory motor functioning of students with disabilities and assist in determining needs.
- School therapists address access to education for students with disabilities and assist in determining service needs.
- School therapists address safety of students and school staff.
- School therapists help teach sensory motor skills associated with success in the education setting.
For more information contact Kathy Payne, Administrative Assistant, Regional Programs for the Orthopedically Impaired @ 776-8551 or Andree Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org