Posted on April 27th 2020
SEND support: Online and Telephone Therapy
We are pleased to inform you that Harris Garrard Academy are now offering online and telephone sessions with specialist practitioners.
Online and telephone sessions are being offered to:
- Students with SEND who have open referrals to the ASD Advisory Service, Speech and Language Therapy Services or Educational Psychology Services
- Year 6 students with a diagnosis of speech and language needs or Autism
- Parents of students with EHCPS.
About online and telephone therapy sessions
Online and teletherapy practices have been around for over 20 years and has traditionally been used to compliment face-to-face therapy, or to provide support to people unable to access direct therapy due to illness or location.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, health and education professionals around the globe have had to adapt their way of working by moving towards more virtual interventions. In order to provide continued support to students with SEND, the HGA SEND team have now introduced online consultation and therapy interventions.
Online and tele-therapy interventions can produce excellent outcomes and can be just as effective as face-face interventions. There are clear guidelines issued by The Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, The Department of Education and The British Psychological Society. All practitioners commissioned by HGA are qualified and registered.
Online sessions can be delivered via Skype directly to students working at home. You can access sessions on a laptop, mobile phone or any other device with internet access. You will need to set up a Skype account. Telephone services can be conducted on a device with a loudspeaker function so that parents and students can hear and speak to the therapist together.
Each session lasts for approximately 40 minutes. Parents will also be able to speak directly to the specialist in order to discuss home-based support.
To ensure that sessions adhere to safeguarding requirements, parents are required to be present for the duration of each session.
To maximise therapy sessions:
- Make sure that your family members are dressed appropriately for video sessions - including family members who may pop in unexpectedly whilst you are accessing the session.
- Try and find a quiet space with minimal distractions
- Make sure batteries are fully charged
- Have a pen and paper handy
- Clean the lens on your camera
- Try to find background with minimal distractions or hide your background
- Set your phone to ‘do not disturb’, or mute/ hide any notifications that may pop up on your phone or tablet
- Encourage your child to treat online therapy like a real face-to-face session.
- Use the time online constructively. Prepare for the next session by having a list of questions or notes ready.
Contact the SEND team at HGA to find out more
In order to register for online or teletherapy sessions, please contact the SEND team at email@example.com. If we are able to provide this service to your child, a member of the SEND team will contact you to arrange a suitable session time and date.
Please note, sessions are limited and will be offered on a needs-led basis.
Additional Local Authority support: Bexley Parent Support Services
If you have a child with additional needs who is struggling emotionally or academically during this pandemic, Bexley Council’s Early Intervention and Specialist Advice Service (EISAS) may be able to help you. During this period of school closure, the EISAS team are providing advice and guidance to parents and carers, via phone or email. The EISAS service is open between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday (not including Bank Holidays). Telephone: 0203 045 3692. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Best wishes and stay safe.
Assistant Principal and SENCO