Bilingual SLP Hiring Guide

  • December 23, 2020
  • Bilingual Therapies

As a school district, your primary goal is to see that your students succeed. Ensuring your students have the appropriate and necessary services is certainly a key component and our Bilingual Therapies team is here to help you by providing top-notch professionals to achieve those goals. For students with speech and language disorders, one necessary professional is a speech-language pathologist (SLP). In areas with a growing multicultural community, having a bilingual SLP allows the district to complete evaluations in a student’s native language, as required by federal law, and can reduce overidentification.  Once these students have been identified for services, the bilingual SLP can support bilingual and English language learners with the intervention they need to meet their speech and language goals. At Bilingual Therapies, we are here to help you serve your students with the crucial resources they need with qualified bilingual SLPs.

What is a Bilingual SLP? 

Bilingual Therapies used the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association “Bilingual Service Providers” definition as the keystone for developing their training procedures. Bilingual SLPs can better help to determine whether language difficulties are related to typical second language differences or due to a communication disorder. Bilingual SLPs also use intervention strategies in the mode of communication that’s most appropriate for the need of the individual. However not all bilingual SLPs have the training needed to be able to do appropriate assessments and evaluations

At Bilingual Therapies, we offer our Bilingual SLPs multiple training opportunities so that they can provide the services that your district needs. Bilingual Therapies is committed to ensuring that our bilingual SLPs strive to best serve their culturally and linguistically diverse students.

Benefits of Hiring School-Based Bilingual SLPs

So how can your school district benefit from hiring a bilingual SLP? Bilingual SLPs serve as a crucial resource, not only for students but also for other school-based professionals and the student’s family. Bilingual SLPs collaborate with student’s teachers and the IEP team to create a plan to support communication needs.  They also seamlessly assist parents in their home language helping to promote academic success, as well as social development with peers and the community.

Characteristics to look for in a Bilingual SLP

  1. Can Provide Assessment and Treatment in the Student’s Native Language – Bilingual SLPs can support children in their native language, they can maintain an important connection to their family and community.  They can take what they have learned in the speech room and move that into their home, allowing families to become a part of that student’s progress.
  2. Are Culturally Competent – Bilingual SLPs have a unique passion for providing services to students and families that are culturally and linguistically diverse. They have worked on becoming culturally competent to provide services to children from a variety of cultural backgrounds. They understand what it is to learn and speak a second language.  This perspective helps them when working with families and students with whom they may not share a common language. 
  3. Are Well-Versed in Typical and Second Language Development – In addition to understanding English language development, bilingual SLPs must also understand the differences involved in second language development. This knowledge helps them when consulting with teachers regarding what is typical for second language learners. It also allows them to answer whether the student is presenting with a “language disorder or a language difference” when doing speech and language assessments.
  4. Serve as a Resource of Information on Second Language Acquisition and Bilingual Language Learning – Many parents and school staff have questions when it comes to learning a second language. They may also have inaccurate information regarding how children with disabilities develop a second language. With their knowledge of bilingual language development, they become a great resource by dispelling common myths with current research in bilingual language development. They also share information regarding the benefits of bilingualism for students.
  5. Are Advocates – Bilingual SLPs are advocates for their students and their families.  They can support them by orienting them to the special education system and their rights.  They also provide them with information about their communication needs and ways to support them as they develop their language skills.  Bilingual SLPs also provide school staff with current information regarding second language development which can help reduce over-identification. By doing this, they become an important ally in helping their students succeed.

How to Get Started with Bilingual Therapies

When you decide to add a bilingual SLP to your professional team, Bilingual Therapies is here to help you find the ideal professional that will meet your needs. At Bilingual Therapies, we recruit and support expert bilingual professionals ready to make a difference. Thanks to our continuing education and training opportunities, our bilingual SLPs are always on the front-end of clinical research and best practices, far exceeding professional standards.

When you choose to work with Bilingual Therapies, we work with you to find the perfect professional match. You have a passion for providing impactful resources to your students – let our team help do the same for you by providing you with top-notch school-based professionals. 

At Bilingual Therapies, we understand that you strive to provide your students with the best resources possible and want to help you achieve that goal and see your students excel. To learn more about how a bilingual SLP can make a difference in your school, contact Bilingual Therapies at 800-825-7133, or email us at [email protected].

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Together, let’s create brighter futures for culturally diverse students.