The Speech and Language Pathologists of the Guilford County School system endeavor to provide services that enhance students' ability to attain communication efficiency and obtain knowledge and skills from their engagement with the educational process.
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About Speech and Language Pathology Services
The clinicians that serve the students of Guilford County Schools must hold a master's degree in speech and language pathology, be certified by the Department of Public Instruction and hold a license by the state of North Carolina. There are over 125 clinicians in Guilford County Schools who serve not only students in our elementary, middle and high schools but also pre-kindergarten students.
For a student to receive speech and/or language services they must meet state and local qualification through the Exceptional Children's program. The process for identifying whether a student qualifies for services entails an appropriate assessment of the child's communication skills and the finding that one or more skills is significantly below normal in development AND that the communication deficit impacts the student's ability to access the standard course of study.
Normal communication involves the ability to understand verbal input; organize ideas and express those thoughts into expressive language; and produce meaningful, intelligible and fluent speech. These abilities develop over the course of a child's life. Parents often express concern about whether their child is communicating in a normal and age appropriate manner. In general, children begin the process of developing communication from the moment they are born and while this process improves throughout one's lifetime the majority of skills are adult-like at some point between 9 and 11 years of age. Speech/language therapy is not indicated for children who are functioning at an age appropriate level.
Given the importance of communication for educational success, speech/language therapy may be indicated for children who do not possess the skills appropriate for children of their age. When an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) is written for a child needing services, the goal is to provide the necessary skills and bring them to a level of communication function that enables them to access the curriculum at their level of ability.