What are Telespeech Paraprofessionals or eHelpers?

by Ben Beckstrom on November 28, 2011

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Telespeech paraprofessionals, also known as eHelpers, are a very important part of providing effective telespeech services to clients everywhere. They have several different duties, which help the actual speech-language pathologist to better serve their clientele.

What do Telespeech Paraprofessionals Do?
eHelpers do several different things. In an educational setting, the eHelper will:

  • Manage the online therapy schedule: to ensure that all clients get the services they need without conflict. Managing the schedule also means the student will get the best quality speech therapy while minimizing the time they spend away from their conventional classroom.
  • Help the students get back and forth from their telespeech sessions. eHelpers will also remain with the student for the duration of the session, to help with interactions between the speech-language pathologist (SLP) and the student. They can also help the SLP develop strategies to best help the student with learning. The eHelper is there to work with each child to make sure they get the best session to support their learning and success.
  • Access each student’s files to correspond with parents and teachers. The telespeech paraprofessional can access all student files, which enables them to print out correspondence, progress reports, and other information to share with teachers and parents. When teachers, parents, and SLPs are all on the same page and aware of what their student is working on, it creates a more successful learning environment for the child. Parents and teachers can see what the SLP has been doing with their child, and they can see where the child has made progress, as well as the areas where they child may need additional support.
  • eHelpers work with the students during “down time.” There are several parts of the day, such as time between activities or classes, where students can benefit from working on the online activities/homework provided by the SLP during the session. eHelpers make it possible for children to work on their assignments during these times to help them hone their skills and reach optimal success.
  • eHelpers create a bridge between schools and telepractices to facilitate a better working relationship between the two. eHelpers are aware of both sides of the fence, and can help the school to create a better telespeech program. They can work with the SLP to ensure the program is all it can be, and they can foster student success to improve relationships overall.

Telespeech paraprofessionals are an integral piece of the telepractice puzzle. Without their help, SLPs would not be able to provide services at their highest possible quality.

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