Welcome to OTAO’s K-12 Advocacy Work Group!

 

Back story:  At  OTAO's 2016 Annual Conference, Advocacy Matters! session, with OTAO’s lobbyist, Nikki Terzieff – school therapists requested that OTAO address workload versus caseload.  Actions since have included:

  • Position Paper on Determination of Appropriate Caseload Size/Workload for School-Based Occupational Therapists, written by: Christine Van Osdol, MOT, OTR/L (former OTAO Legislative Committee Co-chair).
  • OTAO's Legislative Committee and lobbyist presenting at Joint Committee on Student Success Hearing in Hood River.
  • Representative Susan McLain, Democrat, District 29, Hillsboro, is a true advocate of occupational therapy
    • 2017 Legislative Session - HB 3263
    • 2018 OTAO Annual Conference – invited by our lobbyist, came and spoke.  Listened to our concerns.
    • 2019 Legislative Session - HB 2985 (similar to HB 3263) introduced.  Decision made to focus on Student Success Bill.

Which brings us to now:  April 12, 2019, at the OTAO Legislative Day in Salem, Senator Arnie Roblan, Democrat, District 5, Coos Bay, discussed Student Success Act, stating that occupational therapists need to take their advocacy to the local level.  See Oregon School Board Association article.

OT’s need to come together to have a product to present to our local school administrators!

This ties in with:

  • AOTA’s push for the Distinct Value of Occupational Therapy in Today’s Schools (Member Appreciation webinar, April 2019) - Occupational therapy providing Tier 1 and Tier 2 supports in addition to traditional therapy
  • AOTA’s BEST PRACTICES for Occupational Therapy in Schools, 2019 edition, Evidence-Based Practices.
  • Workload vs Caseload continues!
  • Use of occupational therapy assistants
  • And, ideas/actions that our therapists in the State are already doing.  Share our successes!

To do this – we will be attempting an almost 3-tiered process

  1. Tier 1/available to all – OR OT K-12 Advocacy Facebook Group
  2. Tier 2/this page on OTAO.com – will be accessible to OTAO members/non-members.   Will attempt to update frequently, link documents and resources.
  3. Tier 3 – OTAO members will be able to login to Members Only Committee page and have access to all.  Will be able to 1) upload/look at uploaded documents/help create final product, 2) will be able to see other members of committee, and 3) will be able to message them.  (Looking to have capability to join group through member profile.  But, as we work on this, email [email protected] to join OTAO Member Committee.)

Questions/comments to Jan Cuciti, [email protected]