The USA School-based OTs and PTs Looking for Change Coalition is group of passionate school OTps and PTs that are advocating for educational credentialing—this means that we want to be considered “teachers” just like social workers, psychologists, school counselors, etc. We are making gains in our advocacy efforts—please help us by joining our group:
One of my passion projects is to get educational credentialing for school OTps and PTs.
All the other related service providers have an educational credential, which means that they are issued “teaching certificates” in their roles as school counselor, speech language pathologist, social worker, or psychologist.
We all have similar roles and job duties as Specialized Instructional Support Personnel (SISPs). Today, there’s a minimum requirement of a Master’s Degree to enter the field. Physical therapists have an entry level requirement of a Doctorate!
Yet, OTps and PTs don’t have an educational credential, AKA a teaching certificate. This limits us from advancing to leadership positions because in order to apply to take the coursework to get your school admin degree, you’ve got to have experience “Teaching.” Our experience in the schools doesn’t count as “teaching”. But social workers, counselors, and psychologists time spent with students does count as “teaching.”
This is a blatant segregation of our professions. It places us in an inferior position because we are unable to advance to leadership roles. We aren’t offered a seat at the table to utilize our experiences and background knowledge to make decisions that affect the whole school community.
The trickle-down effect of not having any OTps or PTs at the leadership table is that we’re often not included in things. We are often hired differently, placed in different unions, or not even hired directly. This means different benefits, insurance, and retirement opportunities.
In the immediate, it often means that we don’t have adequate work space, a budget for supplies, or continuing education opportunities.
Educational Credentialing—How can it help?
Don’t forget to spread the word about our quest for educational credentialing. We are educators, and should be treated as such.
Please join our coalition for change:
USA School-based OTs & PTs Looking for Change.