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Research Article  |   November 1988
Special Education and Occupational Therapy: Making the Relationship Work
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Martha J. Coutinho, PhD, is Education Research and Policy Associate at the National Association of State Directors of Special Education, 2021 K Street, NW, Suite 315, Washington, DC 20006
  • Dawn L. Hunter, PhD, is Vice President at Education Policy and Program Solutions, Inc., Reston, Virginia
  • Martha J. Coutinho and Dawn L. Hunter wrote this article in their private capacities. No official support or endorsement by the National Association of the State Directors of Special Education or by Education Policy and Program Solutions, Inc., was intended or should be inferred.
    Martha J. Coutinho and Dawn L. Hunter wrote this article in their private capacities. No official support or endorsement by the National Association of the State Directors of Special Education or by Education Policy and Program Solutions, Inc., was intended or should be inferred.Ă—
Article Information
Multidisciplinary Practice / School-Based Practice / Features
Research Article   |   November 1988
Special Education and Occupational Therapy: Making the Relationship Work
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, November 1988, Vol. 42, 706-712. doi:10.5014/ajot.42.11.706
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, November 1988, Vol. 42, 706-712. doi:10.5014/ajot.42.11.706
Abstract

Working as an occupational therapist in publicly funded schools requires a variety of skills. These skills include assessing the needs of children, serving as a member of the multidisciplinary team, developing individualized education program (IEP) goals and objectives in conjunction with other team members, providing services, and coordinating efforts with parents, teachers, and administrators. To fulfill these responsibilities, occupational therapists must have a comprehensive understanding of the complex federal and state laws that mandate the provision of special education and related services. Therefore, the purposes of this article are (a) to describe the legal framework within which decisions are made to provide occupational therapy to students in publicly funded school programs and (b) to highlight the knowledge and skills occupational therapists need to work effectively in schools with teachers, administrators, and parents.