Occupational therapy is a vital part of the education system in the United Kingdom, particularly within Special Educational Needs (SEN) schools. As an occupational therapist working within a SEN school, you have the opportunity to make a real difference to the lives of children with a wide range of disabilities and learning difficulties. In this blog, we’ll explore what it’s like to work as an occupational therapist within a SEN school and the benefits that this role can offer.
What does an occupational therapist do in a SEN school?
Occupational therapists in SEN schools work with children who have a range of needs, including physical disabilities, sensory impairments, and learning difficulties. They help children to develop the skills they need to participate in everyday activities, such as getting dressed, eating, and playing with friends.
As an occupational therapist in a SEN school, your role may involve:
- Assessing children’s needs: You’ll assess children’s abilities and identify any areas where they need support to participate in everyday activities.
- Developing and implementing therapy plans: Based on your assessments, you’ll develop therapy plans to help children achieve their goals. You’ll work with children in one-on-one sessions or in group settings, using a range of techniques and interventions.
- Supporting teachers and parents: You’ll work closely with teachers and parents to provide advice and support on how to help children develop their skills outside of therapy sessions.
- Collaborating with other professionals: You’ll work as part of a multidisciplinary team, collaborating with other professionals such as speech and language therapists, physiotherapists, and educational psychologists to ensure that children receive the support they need.
What are the benefits of working as an occupational therapist in a SEN school?
Working as an occupational therapist in a SEN school can be hugely rewarding, both personally and professionally. Here are some of the benefits:
- Making a real difference: You’ll have the opportunity to make a real difference to the lives of children with special educational needs. Seeing the progress that children make as a result of your support can be incredibly rewarding.
- Variety: No two days are the same in a SEN school, and you’ll work with children with a wide range of needs. This means that you’ll have the opportunity to develop a broad range of skills and expertise.
- Professional development: SEN schools offer a range of training opportunities, so you’ll have the opportunity to develop your skills and expertise throughout your career.
- Collaborative working: Working as part of a multidisciplinary team can be hugely beneficial, and you’ll have the opportunity to learn from and collaborate with other professionals.
In conclusion, working as an occupational therapist in a SEN school can be an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling career. You’ll have the opportunity to make a real difference to the lives of children with special educational needs and develop your skills and expertise throughout your career. If you’re passionate about supporting children with special educational needs and are looking for a rewarding career, then a career in occupational therapy within a SEN school may be the perfect choice for you.