What is Occupational Therapy (OT)?
Occupational therapists help people by promoting independence and active participation in daily activities (occupations). These activities can be divided into the areas of personal and domestic tasks, work/school and leisure/social activities.
Occupational Therapy at The Link Secondary Link
Occupational therapy at The Link School focuses on the occupations and skills that are required to be successful at school. At the Link we focus on providing individual therapy to children who are identified to have a specific need for individual therapy on their Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP) or Statement of Special Education Needs.
Occupational Therapists work closely with the teaching staff and other therapists providing advice and support to enable all the students to access the Curriculum. At the Link, we have two fully qualified Occupational Therapists. We also have an Occupational Therapy Assistant working part-time alongside the therapists to aid in delivery of individual and group provision.
What do we do?
At The Link, we recognise the importance of maximising our students’ potential to learn and to become as independent as possible. We aim to equip the students with the necessary skills needed in everyday life such as:
- Fine and gross motor skills (e.g. handwriting, scissor skills, stair mobility)
- Visual perceptual skills (e.g. modified worksheets)
- Visual motor integration (e.g. bilateral integration)
- Alertness (e.g. daily movement breaks)
- Sensory processing skills (e.g. individualised sensory diets)
- Organisational skills (e.g. time management, daily routines)
- Independence and life skills (e.g. school hygiene routines, cooking, dressing, eating, self-care)
Depending on individual needs, we can provide advice regarding seated posture and make recommendations for equipment and environmental adaptations.
Why would my child need Occupational Therapy?
There are many ways occupational therapy might help your child. If your child has marked difficulties that are affecting his or her participation and function within the school, please speak to the class teacher and they can refer the child for an OT assessment if appropriate.
What happens in Occupational Therapy?
An Occupational Therapist will evaluate your child as well as the environment and the task and develop individualised goals together with your child that address the identified need.
Your child will then work together with the Occupational Therapist to help improve or maintain your child’s ability to perform daily occupations. This may include modifying both the task and the environment to allow your child to be as independent as possible.
The intervention plan may also include for example a home exercise programme.
Jo Davis studied at Brunel University and qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 1999. She worked in Social Services before starting at the Link Primary and Secondary schools in 2008.
Katya Moisio studied at Brunel University and qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 2008. She worked in the NHS at St George’s hospital before starting at the Link Secondary school in November 2013.
Our Occupational Therapy Assistant Fiona Oldham is a qualified youth worker and has several sports qualifications. She has worked as a Support Assistant with children with special needs for six years. Fiona started working as Occupational Therapy Assistant in September 2015.
Our qualified Occupational Therapists belong to the College of Occupational Therapists and are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council.
If you would like to find out more about our work or have any questions, please contact us through the school office.