Q:  My son recently fell and broke his right arm, of course the hand that he writes with.  Can he receive OT at school to help with his rehab?

A:  No.  In order to receive OT you must be a special education student with an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP).  Rehabilitation of a broken arm would be addressed by a medically-based OT.  Certainly the OT at your school might be able to offer suggestions to his teacher to help with completing writing assignments or other classroom tasks while he is recovering.

Q:  My child has sensory integration dysfunction and she is unable to tolerate hair brushing, tooth brushing or even cutting her finger nails.  Can the school OT help?

A:  The OT within the school may be able to offer some advise, however your child must first be receiving special education in order to receive OT services and secondly the sensory concerns must directly impact the child’s ability to complete curriculum-based activities.  Hair/tooth brushing and nail trimming is not a curriculum expectation and therefore cannot be addressed by a school-based OT.

Q:  My daughter has an IEP and currently receives 1/2 hour per week of OT.  Can she get more OT or is 1/2 hour the maximum?

A:  The frequency and duration of therapy provided is based on each individual student’s needs, there is no maximum/minimum.  It is the amount of skilled intervention required in order for a student to make progress towards objectives.  It is important to note that because school-based OT services are directly related to curriculum expectations, skills are being addressed daily within the classroom.  In addition to direct intervention, consultation time may also be used to discuss strategies and modifications with classroom teachers and parents to ensure carryover of therapeutic activities.