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The Unique Role of Related Service Providers

presented by Mary Jane Rapport & Amy Barr

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What are related services, and who provides these services to students with disabilities in schools? This course will define related service and describe how related service providers help a child with a disability benefit from their special education program. This course will assist all school personnel, including teachers, administrators, and support staff, by covering topics that address who related service providers are and what their roles are in supporting students. In addition, some guidance around how many people from different disciplines and backgrounds can come together to work collaboratively on behalf of the student is included. Implementation of related services will be the focus of the course.

Meet Your Instructors

  • Mary Jane Rapport, PT, DPT, PhD, FAPTA

    Mary Jane Rapport, PT, DPT, PhD is a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA). Dr. Rapport is a professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and the Department of Pediatrics in the School of Medicine at the University of Colorado, where she is on the faculty of the Physical Therapy Program. She is the Director of the University of Colorado Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency Program, the PT Program Student Services Coordinator, the PT Discipline Director for the Maternal Child Health LEND program through JFK Partners, and the Co-Director of the Teaching Scholars Program in the School of Medicine. Dr. Rapport has extensive experience as an educator and a pediatric physical therapist with a productive record of presentations and publications. Much of her career has been focused on legislative action, policy interpretation for the delivery of special education, related services, and early intervention services. Dr. Rapport has been a physical therapist for over 30 years and a physical therapist educator for over 10 years. While much of her career has been in academia and focused on higher education, she has maintained clinical practice in schools as a school-based physical therapist and as an early intervention service provider. Most recently, she has been working one day a week with students with disabilities at the preschool, elementary, and high schools levels in a local school district. She has taught courses and workshops and delivered conference sessions specifically on the implementation of services under IDEA and related federal laws to thousands of pediatric physical therapists over the years.

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  • Amy Barr, PT, DPT

    Amy Barr, PT, DPT is a practicing school-based therapist and the Physical Therapy Coordinator for a large school district located in the suburban Denver area. She has 20 years of experience working with adults and children and has spent the last 14 years serving preschool through transition age students in a school setting. Dr. Barr teaches nationally on topics important to school-based therapy, including team collaboration, IEP development, and physical therapist performance appraisal. She has a passion for providing quality continuing education for school-based physical therapists and cofounded an annual education day for therapists in Colorado. Dr. Barr chaired the Physical Therapist Performance Appraisal Task Force for the School-Based Special Interest Group of the Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy. She participated in the PT Performance Appraisal work group for the Colorado Educator Effectiveness Project and is an active member of the Colorado Department of Education Physical Therapy Advisory Committee. Dr. Barr graduated from the University of Colorado with her Masters of Science in Physical Therapy in 1997 and her Doctor of Physical Therapy in 2010. She is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association and the Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy.

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

Download Learning Objectives
  1. Defining Related Services

    1. Defining Related Services

    This chapter will lay the foundation for the course by defining and explaining related services. Beginning with the definition from federal regulations, the chapter will continue by providing additional context to the role of related services as part of special education.

  2. Providing Related Services to Students

    2. Providing Related Services to Students

    This chapter will build off of Chapter 1 by describing how related service providers make decisions from the perspective of their own disciplines but then come together as a team to support a student’s special education program through the IEP.

  3. Teamwork and Collaboration

    3. Teamwork and Collaboration

    This chapter will address more specific components of teamwork and provide examples of how to facilitate interaction and communication among related service providers to collaborate on IEP goals and meet the needs of the student. This chapter also focuses on the support that school administrators can provide to related service providers and ideas for assessing their performance.