Empowering Parents One Child at a Time
This Execution plan has all the stuff you need to know to get starting winning at Ozark Therapy.
I’ve been in working in speech-language pathology since 2004 and I’m thrilled to be your guide throughout this Execution Plan.
While working in a hospital setting, schools, and private practice I’ve worked with children with all sorts of disorders, syndromes, and delays.
I have worked with speech implementors the past ten years and have developed our systems in such a way that folks without any background in communication disorders, special education, or even regular education can implement our plan and achieve successful outcomes with students.
Use what you learn in this Execution Plan to plan to have high-quality therapy sessions, effective communication with other IEP team members, and feel confident about your ability to help your students.
Let’s get started!
Ozark Therapy Institute, LLC
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This is why we exist beyond money. Our core purpose is the heart and soul of everything we do at Ozark Therapy.
We exist for the betterment of lives as we provide school-based therapy.
Every decision we make is tied to fulfilling these purposes. We should not be doing anything that does not help us meet our reason for existence.
What Are Core Values: These are the things we do no matter what. (Even if it costs us money, we do these things)
We are people that others want to be around. In addition to strong relationships with parents, administrators, and teachers, we have great rapport with kids. We appreciate the need to be viewed as the best in our field, but we also don’t take ourselves to seriously. A hallmark of our company culture is the ability to empathize with each other and the people we serve.
We are professional problem solvers. We often shine the brightest in situations where others have failed and love the challenge of difficult situations. Our systematic approach to therapy maximizes effectiveness, and efficiency. We value intelligence, accuracy, and we work every day to provide more in value than we accept in payment.
As a team we are upbeat, positive, go-getters. Those around us can’t help but notice our confidence and enthusiasm, not only for our work, but in every avenue of our lives. While we cannot always choose the circumstances that enter our lives, we can choose how we act and it is our nature to act happy and optimistic.
Realizing the great value of integrity and character, we do the right thing all the time, even when we are not at work or when it is not in the financial best interest of the company. We strive to maintain our reputation of being above reproach in every decision. This value is manifest in our devotion to each other and treating others the way we would want to be treated.
Each team member has a deep seated hunger to win and achieve greatness in their life. We seek growth and never give up. This is true in our personal lives and in our work We are passionate crusaders doing work that matters. We avoid victim thinking in undesirable circumstances and pursue continued personal and professional growth in order to serve and live to an ever-higher standard. It is our nature to be focused and intense over long periods of time. This results in momentum which brings about a cycle of more and more achievement.
Unlike the Core purpose or Core Values which almost never change, the operating principles change relatively frequently. As soon as we find a better way of doing what we need to do, we change our playbook.
Each of the operating principles is not business theory. It is the way we do things here.
Our Vision-Traction-Organizer was developed by imagining were we want the organization to be 10-15 years from now. We then break that vision down into a 3-year plan, 1-year goals and 90-day “rocks”.
“Rocks” comes from the illustration used by Stephen Covey. You probably have heard it before. He starts with an empty Cylindar. The cylinder represents time. He fills the cylinar in large, fist-sized rocks and asks his students if the cylinar is full. They nod their heads “yes”. He then takes a bucket full of gravel and it fills in the gaps between the rocks. He asks his class if the cylindar is full yet. (By now they have caught on that it not full.). He then pours in a bucket of sand and fills the space between the gravel. FInally he pours in several large buckets of water. If he had poured the gravel, the sand, and the water in first, there would have been no room for the rocks. Rocks are the incredibily important parts of our life and business. The Gravel, sand, and water are the day to day tasks which fill every available our day.
Rocks are the short-term (90-day) priorities that help us achieve our Annual goals, 3-year plan, and 10-15 year strategic objective. We break the annual goals down into 90-day priorities because an annual goal can feel too overwhelming. Rather than be overwhelmed by the monumental task of accomplishing our year-long goals we break it down into bite-size chunks called Rocks.
Once company rocks and leadership rocks are set, it is the job of the leadership team to communicate these Rocks to the entire organization so that you can set your Rocks.
When Establishing your Rocks, remember a few guidelines:
Integrator- Dan McCool
Director of Operations- Dan Stevenson
Director of Finance- Christine Bassinger
Director of Marketing- Dan McCool
Director or HR- Dan McCool
OT Team: Leah Cagle
PT Team: Rachel Taylor
Speech Team: Dan McCool
Steps to completing your apprenticeship:
Sometimes people are nervous about the 90 (working) day probation period, but it exists to protect you and the company.
During this 90 days, there is little obligation. If you realize that Ozark Therapy is not a good fit for your, then you owe it to yourself to find a job that you love.
Likewise, if it becomes apparent that you interviewed well, but you do not have the skill set, the humility, the hunger to do what we do, or you are just not people-smart, we have a low obligation.
After 90 days though, we take serving our team and working with them very seriously.
The observations are intended to show you what winning looks like at Ozark Therapy. To be observed a person must be at least a Sr. Therapist. A Senior therapist has been with the company at least 3 years and has demonstrated consistent excellence.
It is recommended that new team members observed with several different people. Although all of the Sr. therapists are excellent at their jobs, they go about achieving results in very different ways.
It would also be beneficial for a new team member to observe Sr. Therapists from other disciplines. Speech therapists, have much to learn from OT and PT. The converse is also true. Undoubtably, each discipline can contribute perspective and ideas for solving problems.
The more we collaborate, the better the solutions.
Therapists Apprenticeship Expectations:
30 Day Expectations:
60 Day Expectations:
90 Day Expectations:
Personal growth is very important for everyone on the Ozark Therapy Team. In five years, you will be the same person that you are today, except for the people you meet and the books you read. We push people to grow through reading. To encourage that habit, you will be furnished with a collection of great books that will kick-start your personal and professional growth over the next 90 days. Here is a list of the required reading during your apprenticeship:
The Travelers Gift
The Traveler’s gift is the account of David Ponder as he journey’s from a place in life where he felt like his life was going the completely a victim of circumstance.
People forget things that are boring, but remember things that are remarkable. Everyone has seen thousands of brown cows (boring), but if you saw a purple cow, you would probably be telling folks about. Seth Godin teaches people that being remarkable is something that is built in and how we must be memorable in order to remarkable in a world full of boring.
“QBQ is the best book on personal responsibility available today.”
The Go-Giver tells the story of an ambitious young man named Joe who learns that changing his focus from getting to giving ultimately leads to unexpected return
Nobody wants to have their time wasted, and usually that is way people hate meetings- they are boring, unproductive, black-holes that suck the life out of you. However, meetings that are exciting, inspiring, and productive help push people and organizations to new heights.
We have a few kinds of meetings:
Meetings are almost always better when they happen in person, but because we are frequently at different locations, you can participate in Weekly L-10 meetings via a Zoom Meeting. Zoom is a teleconferencing tool that requires a computer, a tablet or a smartphone. Coordinate with your team leader or group leader if the meetings are utilizing Zoom.
Very few people are nerdy enough to come to interview with their personal mission statement already done. However, we show people our mission statement in the interview process and if they go through the whole interview process and are hired, we require you to develop a personal mission statement. We want your mission statement to show how the position you accept is contributing to living out your dream.
People tend to stay at a place for a long time if their lives are remarkably better because it fits with how they want their lives to be.
Helpful resources for Developing a Personal Mission Statement
Dan McCool’s Personal Mission Statement
You can not win at Ozark Therapy if you do not know the results that you are responsible for achieving. Every person at Ozark Therapy has a KRA. This is the document that explains the results for each position.
KRA stands for Key Result Areas
Instead of having job descriptions, we have KRAs. The difference between the two is that Job descriptions usually describe the activities done in a certain position and a KRA describes the end result for which that person is responsible.
A Job description may say your job is to do therapy. Therapy is an activity.
A KRA may say Get the child to achieve their goals. Achievement of goals is the outcome that we need. This will certainly involve doing therapy, but may include preparing homework for the student or many other activities.
The KRA explains what winning looks like at Ozark Therapy.
List of things to do on the First day of School
Scheduling Request form
~Write each students name down on a sticky note tabCollect scheduling request forms from teachers and use sticky tabs to plug in each student in a time slot that works for them.
~Adjust and move students on the schedule as needed with times that work as you go through your caseload. (It’s OK to schedule students on the quarter hour as well!)
~Once you have a tentative schedule created on the manila folder with each student you can type it out into a more formal schedule that can be emailed out to teachers and case managers.
Tip: To stay organized, create a separate manila folder for each school district that you serve.
Your homepage will have several locations where you can see upcoming IEPs, upcoming progress/quarterly notes, etc. Keep an eye on these and the dates as districts, teachers, etc have their own way of notifying the team of an update and sometimes we can be forgotten to be informed (we’re all human). So to complete an IEP update I find it useful to fill out the IEP update document first so that you have it saved for reference and then you can just copy and paste into spedtrack. Sped track has a way of losing our information frequently and this document will save you from recalling what you reported/recommended earlier. Not all schools have sped track and the IEP update document will also be easy to send to the proper team member when an IEP update is due and allows them to copy and paste our information directly as well.
Entering Initial Evaluation Information
Some schools will enter your goals and recommended weekly/monthly minutes. They will get this information from the evaluation you send in and you aren’t required to do anything until the IEP update. Some schools require you to input your goals and services yourself. You will need to ask your appropriate team member or school what they require of you, sometimes they will send you an email when they are ready for you to enter your goals and information. See Sections A and B below under completing an IEP update for how to input this information.
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Direct Deposit Authorization
Ozark Therapy Employee Information
Form W-4 (2017)
SIMPLE IRA Plan FAQs
SIMPLE IRA Participant Guide
Reimbursable expenses may include the following:
Reimbursement procedure for Continuing Education:
Reimbursement procedure for Licensure Renewals:
Reimbursement procedure for Therapy Materials:
Please be prepared to state the following:
3. To receive reimbursement, please deliver the receipt the Office or Clinic Manager no later than the month in which it was purchased.
As you probably realize at this point, joining our team is HUGE deal!
Our hiring process is lengthy on purpose. This is one of the methods we use to separate the thoroughbreds from the donkeys. (Nobody get all hot and bother about that. If your here, your a thoroughbred. Those that didn’t make the cut- donkeys.)
While there are many components and layers to the hiring process we are focused on four main areas:
It is important that you know what an ideal team player is because, that is what we are all trying to become. Part of being a team-member involves self-improvement.
*Much of this people strategy is based on “The Ideal Team Player” by Patrick Lencioni
So what causes people to leave?
There are only three reasons we find team members fail to the point we have to release them.
It is the job of the leadership to make sure each team member knows how winning is defined and measured. If a team member does not know what winning looks like, how can they possibly succeed? It is the leaders job to train and mentor the new pers and to continue to mentor them in new tasks. Leaders must provide the tools to win (that what this entire Execution Plan is designed to be!) Another leadership failure that will cause a team member to fail is unresolved conflict. Early and often a leader in the company will find out about any conflicts and demand resolution. When humans work together, there is inevitable drama. Good people leave when we don’t throw water on that drama.
2. Failure because of personal problems
If a team member has a personal problem that is causing them to fail at their job, the first thing we will do is quantify the problem- We need to figure out how big the problem is. For instance, if you are upset and not doing your best work because your child has the flu- it’s a pretty minor problem. If you are not doing your best work because your child has been diagnosed with cancer, it will be handled much differently. We will do everything we can to help you through your situation- whether that means bringing food to your house or arranging for your yard to be mowed, we will do our best to help. Why? Because that is how I would want to be treated if my baby were sick. We treat team members like family and we expect that team members will act like family.
Incompetence is not evil; we are all incompetent at something! If we an provide some training and/or mentor some through a rough spot to get them to where there are able to perform, we will do that. Sometimes though, incompetence is a character or a behavior issue.
Character or behavior issues that will result in termination:
The most frustrating type of incompetence is the person who gets their work done but never quite rings the excellence bell. In our company there is not any margin for that kind of behavior. One of our core values is Excellence. If you can not achieve excellence in your role, you need to take steps to improve. If it becomes apparent that you will not achieve and maintain excellence then it is time to consider moving to a “different seat on the bus” or possibly getting on a different bus
The rule-of-thumb that is used in questions surrounding continued employment:
The video below will walk you through how to bill for…
Part 2 of the the timesheet videos will explain how to bill for…
In the last timesheet video, explanation is given for…
If you provide therapy at a school that has a minimum in their contract, here is how it will work:
Mileage Sheet Example:
When you first begin using your Android device, it will request you to add your Gmail account. To receive email with your Android, you can add your work email to your Gmail account. Then when you check your Gmail you will automatically check your website email as well. However, you will be unable to send email for your Ozark Therapy email account, only your Gmail. (When sending a work related email, it must come from an Ozark Therapy account)
You can also add your Ozark Therapy email as a separate account on your Android device. This will allow you to send and receive email from your work email address instead of your GMail account. We will discuss the basic information in this article but your client may be slightly different as Android OS is constantly being updated. These steps were written with the HTC Incredible, an Android phone, using the default client.
1. Click on the “Mail” icon on the front screen of your phone. If the “Mail” icon is not available on the Home Screen you can find it on the Applications screen as well.
2. On the Mail screen, click on New account
3. Select Manual setup
4. Next we will fill in your incoming server settings:
Once you have put in your information, click “Next“.
5. Now we will fill in your outgoing server settings:
Click Next. On the final screen you can name the account what you want. You may choose “work email” or just use the actual email address. This is just a method so you can identify the account for yourself. You will also get an option to choose if this is your default email account. Once you are done, click Finish setup.
Congratulations! Your email is now set up on your Android device.
Here are the dress code guidelines for anyone interacting with students, families, teachers, and administrators in person or via Video conference:
Guidelines for Women:
Guidelines for Men
*Work is not the place to show off your tattoos. If you have tattoos, please wear clothing that keeps you from being a walking art display. I realize that tattoos are highly personal and may have special significance for you, but if you were not born with the markings, please keep them private.
“Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (commonly referred to as Section 504) is a federal law designed to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities in programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance. Those programs include public school districts, institutions of higher education, and other state and local education agencies. To qualify under Section 504, a student must have a disability and that disability must limit a major life function. The Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments of 2008 (ADA) broadened the definition of disability in the ADA as well as in Section 504.” (resource: www.pacer.org)
Students with a BIP have a specific course of action written out in their IEP for instances of significant behavior.
“Common Core is a set of high-quality academic standards in mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA). These learning goals outline what a student should know and be able to do at the end of each grade.” (source: corestandards.org)
DD Act is used to improve service systems for individuals with developmental disabilities; such as employment, healthcare, family support, support for workers with disabilities, and much more.
Refers to Pre-school programs
Pre-school programs that specialize in students with special education needs.
Federal Legislation, created by US Dept. of Education. Act Allows for distribution of funding to schools and school districts with a high percentage of students from low-income families.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act states each child who has a disability and needs special education and related services will receive a free and appropriate public education (FAPE).
Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records.
Legislation that ensures students with a disability are provided with Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE), tailored to a student’s individualized needs.
Written document developed for public school children who are eligible for special education. IEP’s are reviewed at least 1x/year among the IEP “team” working with the student.
Plan for special services for young children with developmental delays; it applies to children ages 0-3. After age 3 the child can begin and IEP; an IFSP and help in IEP transitioning.
An ITP is a section of IEP that outlines transition goals and services for a student. This template is used for planning long-term adult outcomes so appropriate annual goals and outcomes can be made.
NCLB refers to the federal role in holding schools accountable for student outcomes
OCR makes schools accountable to ensure equal access to education and education excellence by enforcing civil rights within the school.
If a parent feels their child is being discriminated against due to their disability, OCR may be involved with the parent to ensure a course of action with the school to remove discrimination and enforce education equality.
This term is used frequently on IEP’s to qualify a student for and IEP if they have a specific or multiple disabilities.
O&M instructors work with individuals who are blind or visually impaired to teach safe and effective travel through their environment.
Act was formed to increase the quality of technical education in the United States. Revised in 2006 as D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act
This means to update the Present level section in an IEP update. You will add information about how the child is currently functioning.
This is a summary of present level performance for a student that may be required prior to an IEP if it is a Testing year.
You will access this tab in spedtrack under the Re-testing box/tab instead of the current IEP section.
“The term related services means transportation, and such developmental, corrective, and other supportive services (including speech-language pathology and audiology services, interpreting services, psychological services, physical and occupational therapy, recreation, including therapeutic recreation, social work services, school nurse services designed to enable a child with a disability to receive a free appropriate public education as described in the individualized education program of the child, counseling services, including rehabilitation counseling, orientation and mobility services, and medical services, except that such medical services shall be for diagnostic and evaluation purposes only) as may be required to assist a child with a disability to benefit from special education, and includes early identification and assessment of disabling conditions in children.” (source: http://www.wrightslaw.com)
“RTI is a multi-tier approach to the early identification and support of students with learning and behavior needs. The RTI process begins with high-quality instruction and universal screening of all children in the general education classroom.” (source: www.rtinetwork.org)
This means direct aids, services, and other supports provided in regular education classes, other education-related settings, and in extracurricular and nonacademic settings, to enable children with disabilities to be educated with non-disabled children to the maximum extent appropriate. (source: parentcenterhub.org)
Civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability. This law applies to public elementary and secondary schools, among other entities. (source: parentcenterhub.org)
You need log-in access provided by the school.
Several of our schools have Spedtrack as a way to update quarterly progress notes and IEP’s. www.insertspecificschoolname.spedtrack.com
Refers to Developmental Delay in students under 5 years of age.
Standardized test. Used for Gross motor and Fine motor. For ages 4-21 years. Testing includes areas of motor performance, functional stability, mobility, strength, coordination, and object manipulation.
Standardized Test used for students demonstrating concerns with visual perception difficulties or deficiencies.
Standardized test for visual perception. Assesses visual perception independent from motor ability.
Standardized test for children ages 5 and under. Can be used to assess Gross Motor, Fine Motor. For under age 5, PT and OT scores are combined to asses a standard deviation score compared to normative values.
Non-standardized test. Measures a students performance of functional tasks in the academic setting (social, participation, independence, ADL, academic, etc). Used with grades K-6. Good to use with a collaborative program for students.
Standardized test. Measures a student’s abilities to coordinate visual perception and motor abilities in finger/hand movements by copying various drawings/shapes. 2 sets of forms, depending on the student’s age. Can be used in ages 2-100.
*We also make use of any testing materials that a school district has available to use.
**If necessary, we can often borrow a test from one of the school districts we serve,
This topic is HUGE! In fact there are several execution plans that have been created for training implementors on the Ozark Therapy System of therapy. If you supervise an implementor, check out the executions plans that have been made for them so that you are familiar with how we have trained them.
How often does a student need to be tested?
A student must have an evaluation prior to being serviced. Re-evaluations should be completed when transitioning from ECSE programs to Grade K and every 3 years in the school setting.
Who can do the testing?
OT: Initial Evaluations must be done by the OTR. Re-Evaluations can be completed by a COTA if service competency has been demonstrated in administration of the specific testing tools being used as deemed by the OTR supervisor. OTR and COTA can complete OT Screens.
PT: Evaluations must be completed by the Physical Therapist. Physical Therapy Screens can be completed by a PTA.
ST: Evaluations must be completed by a Speech Therapist.
[Maybe Put this under Spedtrack and IEPs]
What information should I put in Spedtrack for an IEP update?
Under the “DRAFT IEP” : you will need to complete the TABS outline in bold below and sections per each tab below.
TAB: Services/IEP Dates: This tab is for adding in the type of service (OT, PT, ST, etc), the minutes a student will be serviced for each week, and who will provide the service. *A student must have your specific service and minutes in their IEP before they can be given any services.
TAB: Present Levels: There are several sections under this tab that must be completed on an IEP.
How the child’s disability affects their education: You will need to put in a specific statement regarding how this specific student is impacted by their disability in your area of expertise so services can be justified in the educational setting.
The Strengths of the Child: Every student has strengths and weaknesses. You need to focus on what the student CAN do well and emphasize it in this section.
Changes in current functioning of the child since the initial or prior IEP: This is where you many need a concise paragraph that explains what goals have been met, what the student can do and what they struggle with regarding skills related to the classroom/school setting, and what skills need to be worked toward. There will be a specific section for your discipline to put information in (Fine Motor, Gross Motor, Language, etc.)
Summary of the most recent Evaluation/Re-Evaluation results: The only time you will add to this section is when there has been a Evaluation for this specific IEP. Then the evaluation report gets copied and pasted into the appropriate discipline section. Otherwise, you leave in the information that is currently there and make no changes to this section.
TAB: Goals: In this area you will put in your goals for the IEP period.
Area: You will put in your Discipline or the specific skill being addressed (EX: Occupational Therapy or Fine Motor)
Goal: Goals should be written with intent to meet within 1 year. Make sure you make goals measurable so data collection can be done.
Measurement Type: How will you collect data on this Goal? If you mark data collection or work examples, you MUST save those work examples in their files. Observation Charts is typically how we document with Ozark Therapy.
Mastery Criteria Level: What will determine if the goal is MET. 4/5 trials or 75% of the time, etc. You will put the measurable part of the goal you have set (in the above “goal” sections) for the student here.
Baseline: You will put in how the student is currently functioning here
Implementer: who will be responsible for servicing the student
Frequency: This is where you put how often the student’s IEP goals will be updated (Quarterly, Annually, etc).
Reporting Duration: School year should be selected unless otherwise noted you need to put school year and ESY Period.
Under Active IEP: you will need to complete the Progress Tab for all of your goals under your specific discipline.
If you are sick, you should do the following things: