I think sometimes parents get worried when they find out that there’s a student teacher or student speech pathologist working with their child. It can make parents concerned about the quality of the speech therapy or the instruction that their child is receiving at school. But there’s really no reason to worry and here’s why:
- Research-Based Instruction. The student is learning the latest in research-based teaching strategies in education. Any student fresh from school has been has been exposed to the most recent developments in educational research and speech therapy techniques. A big buzzword in the field of speech therapy is “evidence-based practice” and this refers to using techniques that have been shown through research (ahem, at universities) to improve children’s speech. Some speech pathologists who have been out all of the field for a long period of time may not know the latest research coming out of the major research-based universities. So undergraduate teaching students and graduate students in speech therapy are coming out of schools have strong theoretical foundations. So there’s really no reason to worry about the person’s understanding of education or speech therapy.
- Enthusiasm and passion. Students and student teachers who come into the school systems have incredible a lot of passion and excitement for being in the classroom and for the speech room! They are ready to get out there and are excited about doing the work in a school. I’ve seen some first-year teachers that have just been absolutely fantastic and it’s been fun to watch. Also they taught me some tricks, too!
- Possible employment. Students who student teach in a school district are more likely to be hired by that school district. If the student does a good job as a student teacher, many schools and districts will offer them a job for the following year because they have already seen that the student has the skills needed to be a good teacher. I’ve seen this happen in many different schools where I’ve worked. Why is this important? The students have a real incentive to do a good job. Because if they don’t do a good job, they may not be able to find a job at that school or within the district.
So I hope you have been reassured about the abilities of students if you end up getting a graduate speech therapy student or undergraduate student teacher. Know that they really will do a fantastic job for your child at school. Comment below with any questions or comments you might have!