I'm a guest blogger!

I've made it to the big time...I'm a guest blogger.

You can find today's episode of Biel Blather here on the blog for Starfish Therapies.

Starfish Therapies is a pediatric therapy company in California.  They provide PT, OT and Speech services for children.  The owner of Starfish Therapies is Stacy Menz, PT, DPT, PCS, who was a classmate (and friend) of mine at Boston University.  I personally often use the Starfish Therapies blog as a place to find new ideas for treatments, new information about equipment, and for family education ideas.  Stacy and Starfish Therapies have been a great resource for me (and in turn my colleagues).  If you're at all interested in pediatric development or therapy, I urge you to check it out!


  1. Stumbled upon your page when I was doing a search for "school based physical therapy." I am a pediatric therapist in Cali working under a medical model. We treat under physician orders, rather than what is in the IEP. I am thinking of making the transition to working as a school based physical therapist, as the schedule would work much better with my child's schedule. How do you handle situations that arise where a parent disagrees with your recommendations and does it happen often? I occasionally run into this when a child has made no or minimal progress and prognosis is poor, yet a parent is still demanding active, weekly treatment. Since I treat under MD orders, the doctor typically signs off on a monitor frequency and if the parents want, they can appeal that therapy order.

  2. This situation does happen yearly. It is usually in a small minority of cases as compared to my whole caseload. I usually start by trying to educate the parent as to the role of PT in the school, and how it differs from a medical model. I stress that the time in class is generally the focus, and we are trying to maximize that. Ultimately, the decision is made by the Committee on Special Education. I make recommendations to the Committee, and then the Committee, which includes the parents, makes the final determination. There are always cases where my recommendations are not the approved decision, which can be difficult to swallow. Sometimes, we agree to continue treatment for one more year, so the parent has the whole year to process the thought of discharge. Also, I keep a lot of students (anyone with equipment) on my caseload on a consult basis. That way, I'm there and monitoring in case things go South. Also, the IEP is a fluid document, and PT can be added again if the child has a change or decline in function. That can be reassuring to parents as well.

    I think this is an issue that is widespread across the PT field, regardless of setting. I love school-based therapy (and not just for the schedule). I really love being a part of the educational team, and helping kids receive that education. While this issue is present, it is a minor blip in the road. When looking at the bigger picture, the pros of the school far outweigh the cons. Hope this helps!

    1. Thank you, very helpful information! Yes, I love working with kids. The issue I have is that my children will be "aging" out of daycare soon, and I really do not want them home alone during their school breaks. I was thinking about per diem work which would allow me to work around their schedules, but I really enjoy pediatric PT. I was thinking the school based route may be a good option for me. In my current position, I often consult with my patients' teachers and various school personnel, as well as attended some of their IEP's. Thank you so much for sharing your great blog!!!!


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