No AccessLanguage, Speech, and Hearing Services in SchoolsResearch Article18 Oct 2021

Bilingual Supports for Clinicians: Where Do We Go From Here?

    Purpose

    The purpose of this study was to identify and define the support and needs of bilingual speech-language pathologists working in one urban school district and to investigate the experiences of the clinicians engaged in a professional learning community (PLC) format within their public school system.

    Method

    Twenty-three bilingual speech-language pathologists met in a PLC over the course of 5 months, with a total of four sessions that were a mix of in person and virtual. The participants engaged in group discussions and activities alongside their peers to address self-identified areas of support and need. Additionally, initial and final focus group and exit slip data following the PLC were collected to inform the discussion topics of the PLC and gather final impressions. Constant comparative analysis was utilized to analyze focus group and exit slip data.

    Results

    When looking across the experiences of the clinicians in the district, the three themes that emerged from the data were systemic obstacles, professional obstacles, and supports. The three themes that emerged from the speech-language pathologists' experiences in the PLC included their positive experiences, the challenges with participation, and the positive outcomes from exposure to new techniques and learning platforms.

    Conclusion

    The findings of this study suggest that bilingual clinicians benefit from a PLC model when addressing specific areas of need.

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