The American Occupational Therapy Association

993 WordsDec 7, 20154 Pages
In order to drive the change, it is necessary to create a sense of urgency among the stakeholders, such as occupational therapists, educators, OT students, and parents. The sense of urgency can be established by pointing out possible consequences of not specifying OTs as school mental health providers under the NCLB. It is necessary to convey to stakeholders that the current trends will continue to restrict the role of OTs to the special education population. In the long run, this trend will further limit OT services to address sensorimotor skills as schools are increasingly hiring different disciplines to support students’ compliance and behavioral issues. Similarly, in the case of budget constraints, schools are likely to eliminate or reduce the scope of OT services to redirect funds to address the needs of the larger population. At the proximal level, the leading school therapists can use team meetings and newsletters to create the sense of urgency. At the societal level, the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) can use various platforms, such as OT Pulse and OT connection, newsletters, online blogs, conferences, and Linked in or Facebook forums to create the sense of urgency. Changing policies, attitudes, and culture require a strong coalition of individuals who are willing to take additional responsibilities and volunteer their time. Since the change will mainly benefit occupational therapists and school occupational therapists, state OT associations
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