Speech and Language Services

Speech and Language Pathologists (SLP) assess students for possible delayed speech and language skills and if eligible, provide direct or collaborative services in the areas of phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics.  In addition the SLP is available for consultation and support to staff members and parents regarding communication skill development.  Services are not provided when language deficits or speech patterns are the result of English as a second language or from environmental, economic, or cultural differences.​​

Philosophy of Service

Students with severe communication disabilities derive maximum educational benefit from a service delivery model that teaches the development of functional communication skills in the natural everyday environments unique to individual student needs.  The multidisciplinary team of classroom staff and specialists promote the development of skills that will allow students to express their needs, wants, feelings and preferences in ways that others can understand. 

The Speech and Language Pathologist will assess students for possible delayed speech and language skills and if eligible, provide direct or collaborative services in the areas of phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics.  In addition the SLP is available for consultation and support to staff members and parents regarding communication skill development.  Services are not provided when language deficits or speech patterns are the result of English as a second language or from environmental, economic, or cultural differences.

The Speech and Language Pathology Assistant implements IEP goals and provides speech and language services under the supervision of a credentialed Speech and Language Pathologist.  The SLPA has a professional license issued by the State of California Speech-Language Pathology Advisory Board.

Services Defined

Speech and language evaluation of a student’s communication skills may include assessment of receptive and expressive language, functional skills and social communication.  If appropriate, the student’s articulation, voice and fluency may be assessed.  Comprehensive assessment results of communication skills are provided as part of a multidisciplinary assessment/report completed by the IEP team.

The Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP) and/or Speech and Language Pathology Assistant (SLPA) provide services and data collection on classroom communication goals.    

The Speech-Language Pathologist works with teachers to develop and implement communication goals for the student’s IEP based on the results of assessments and educational performance data.

The SLP provides instructional and therapy materials for implementation of relevant IEP goals to classroom staff as appropriate.

The SLP provides assistance in the assessment and implementation of alternative and/or augmentative communication (AAC) devices and/or supports for classroom use.

The SLP provides supervision of a SLPA according to licensing guidelines for the State of California.


Program Description

Speech and language services are provided as determined by the student’s IEP team.  Each student’s IEP goals should include functional communication skills that improve the student’s independence and appropriate social communication behavior.

Efforts are made to embed instruction in everyday classroom routines and activities.  Adults and peers familiar with the students are effective instructors for functional communication skills.  Instruction is planned and systematic and it extends throughout the student’s school day.  Daily data collection is conducted in order to monitor progress and adjust instruction as necessary.

Services of the Speech and Language Pathologist and/or Speech and Language Pathology Assistant are provided to support the following areas:  receptive and expressive language, auditory processing and discrimination, speech articulation, and social pragmatic language.  To a lesser extent, services may be provided in the areas of voice and/or fluency.

Direct Services:  Services are provided to implement classroom communication goals by the SLP individually (one-on-one) or in a group setting (2-12 students). Direct services may be provided in the classroom or outside of the classroom.  Therapy in a group setting is excellent for generalizing skills and for working on social communication.

Collaboration:   The SLP and the classroom teacher share the responsibility for developing speech and language goals for a student and integrating them into the classroom curriculum. The classroom teacher and staff have the primary responsibility to implement communication goals.  The SLP monitors student progress, assists by modeling and coaching staff on how to work with students, and provides in-service and/or staff development on speech and language strategies.

Consultation:  The SLP provides information and/or responds to inquiries on issues regarding speech and language services from teachers, parents, specialists, and/or district or agency representatives.  Consultation services should be stipulated in the student’s IEP if required to implement the IEP goals.