What do our district Speech-Language Specialists Do?
Speech-language specialists work with children-preschool through grade 8-to evaluate speaking, listening and comprehension skills in order to determine if their ability to communicate is typical, delayed or disordered. If there is a communication problem, speech-language specialists will develop and implement Individual Education Programs (IEPs) based on each child's needs.
What areas do Speech-Language Specialists Evaluate?
1. Articulation/Phonology Are children difficult to understand when compared to other children their age? They may:
substitute certain sounds for others
omit, distort or add sounds
sound unclear or be difficult to understand
2. Fluency Do children have difficulty speaking with ease? They may:
seem tense when speaking
speak too quickly or slowly
hesitate, prolong or repeat sounds, syllables, words, or phrases
make inappropriate facial expressions or gestures when speaking
3. Voice Are children's voices appropriate for their age, gender, or stature? They may:
speak in too high or low a pitch
speak too loudly or softly
sound as if they always have a cold
often have a hoarse or harsh voice
run out of air when speaking
frequently have no voice
4. Language Do children have the signs of a language disorder? They may:
have trouble putting thoughts into words or understanding others
have trouble following directions, answering questions, solving problems
speak in poorly constructed sentences
have limited vocabulary
find it hard to describe objects or events
have illogical or disorganized thoughts
have trouble with humor, inferences, idioms and multiple meaning words
have literacy limitations
Please note that according to N.J.A.C. 6A:14, a referral for a student for whom a language disability is suspected must be forwarded to the child study team. If it is determined at the identification meeting that an evaluation is warranted, the student must be evaluated by a minimum of two child study team members, and other specialists as deemed necessary, in accordance with N.J.A.C. 6A:14-3.4(d).
Information provided by New Jersey Speech-Language-Hearing Association and the New Jersey Department of Education
Wyckoff School District 241 Morse Ave., Wyckoff, NJ 07481