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Episode 106: Goal Writing in School-based OT

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Welcome to the show notes for Episode 106 of the OT Schoolhouse Podcast.

As OTP’s we know that goal writing can get a bit difficult at times. Understanding each component of a goal will ultimately lead to better goal writing. Taking the time to write goals is a huge part of helping the students and other people involved see what progress has been made.

Today we are speaking with Sarah Beaulieu, MOT, OTR/L. and Emily Deller, MOT, OTR/L. They are speaking in-depth about their experience with goal writing in their districts and how it can differ in different districts and states. If you struggle with writing goals in a school-based setting, their goal writing workshop can help with mastering SMART, client-centered goals that are easy to measure.

Tune in to learn the following objectives:

  • Listeners will learn about SMART goals

  • Listeners will learn the key components to writing a great goal

  • Listeners will learn how goals differ in a school-based setting and a pediatric clinic setting

  • Listeners will learn more about the long-term and short-term goals in the school-based setting

  • Listeners will learn more about changing and updating goals in a school-based setting

  • Listeners will learn how to write more collaborative goals

Guest Bio

Emily Deller, MOT, OTR/L

Emily Deller, MOT, OTR/L is passionate about sharing her knowledge with OTs and healthcare professionals, her ‘OT brain’ is rarely off. She graduated from the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia with her Master's in Occupational therapy in 2016 with honors and the Occupational Therapy Faculty Award. She is currently a pediatric Occupational Therapist for the Delaware Autism Program and Delaware School for the Deaf. She has provided occupational therapy services in homes, schools, and to the pediatric population in her community. She also is an adjunct professor at Wesley College in Delaware.

Sarah Beaulieu, MOT, OTR/L is a school-based occupational therapist going into her 5th school year working with early elementary students. She began her OT journey in the outpatient clinic setting, where she found her passion for pediatrics. Sarah is the owner of Sarah Bee OT LLC, where she creates high-quality therapy resources and educational content for OT practitioners across all pediatric settings.

Notable Quotes

"The main idea of writing school-based OT goals are for accessing your education" -Emily D.

"Goal writing, especially for school-based is not something that’s always well taught in OT programs, so it is difficult to know whether or not you're writing good goals, high-quality goals." -Sarah B

“So, legally goals are required to show what skills we are addressing in order to provide those direct services in a public school environment” - Emily D

“I like to think of RTI as writing more goals for a classroom, as opposed to an IEP as goals for an individual student” -Jayson D

“A stranger should be able to read your goal and know exactly how to implement that goal, they should really have a clear understanding of what you're trying to target and how you're going to measure that goal” - Sarah B

“We know a lot of times the skills that are presented at home are different than in school” - Emily D

“More goals don't always mean more progress” - Emily D

“Making sure that you have a plan on how you're both going to, contribute to working towards that goal, what unique skills you're going to be bringing to the table in order to help them achieve that goal” -Sarah B


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Thanks for visiting the podcast show notes! If you enjoyed this episode be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcast, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts


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