The role of school-based Occupational Therapists (OTs) is to support academic achievement and social development by utilizing strategies that promote mental and physical well-being. OTs use occupational techniques and tools to help students integrate into the natural environment of the school.
According to the industry’s best practices in regard to productivity, here are three tips to stay ahead of paperwork and meetings as a school-based OT.
Strengthen collaborative efforts with other staff, such as teachers and receptionists, and even custodians. You never know when you’ll need to borrow tools or require assistance for various therapy tasks.
As well, seek opportunities to educate staff and parents about the purpose of your role so as to increase compliance. Collaborating with teachers can help in meeting functional and education outcomes. Not to mention, allowing them to see what you do can pique interest in your purpose and solidify buy-in.
And while you’re advocating for your students, find ways to advocate for yourself too. Likewise, don’t forget to be supportive of faculty.
Technology is your friend when it comes to efficiency, organization, and student engagement. There are digital apps for dictating notes and managing files––research your options to see which tools are right for you.
Technology not only benefits you as a therapist but utilizing assistive technology devices also benefits your students with cognitive deficits. Devices such as iPads, video games, computers, and robotics can be powerful tools when it comes to student engagement and progress.
As well, decide which assessment tools you plan to use. Create lists, organizing your assessment tools by disease and condition for easy reference.
Design a Documentation System
Documentation is critical and as a school-based OT, you’ll want to document everything. Decide how you want to manage documenting your sessions. Also, consider if you prefer to manage your week by workload or by caseload. The point is to maximize your impact with efficiency.
And anticipate working with multiple populations and what that could look like in terms of preparation and documentation. Transition planning may also play a role in scheduling considerations.
Ready to learn more about how Pioneer Healthcare Services can help you pursue your career as a school-based Occupational Therapist? Contact us today!