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MedEd Connections Resource Guides: Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Professional Team Members


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A team of professionals will assist families in providing the care and services their child may need. The following information briefly explains their roles and responsibilities. Please note that many of these professionals may request your consent to view your child’s medical records in order to more efficiently address the needs of your child’s specific condition.


Audiologist

An audiologist is an expert in the prevention, identification, diagnosis, and evidence-based treatment of hearing, balance, and other auditory disorders for people of all ages. The audiologist will also tell you about hearing assistive technology (HAT) options appropriate for your child. They will fit, program, and maintain any chosen HAT.

Otolaryngologist

Also known as an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor, this medical professional performs surgeries and prescribes medication. Potential surgeries may correct structural problems in the ear, drain fluids, or insert the internal part of implants.

Speech Language Pathologist (SLP)

SLPs work to assess, diagnose, and treat speech, language development, social communication, cognitive communication, and swallowing disorders in children.

Teacher of the Deaf (TOD)

A teacher of the deaf receives specialized training to assess and provide educational services to students who are D/HH. They support general classroom teachers and your school team by providing teaching strategies, language development support, and identification of learning needs for students who are D/HH.

Educational Interpreter

An educational interpreter is licensed by the Ohio Department of Education to facilitate communication between the hearing and deaf/hard of hearing participants who use sign language in pre-K-12 settings.

Special Education Teacher

A special education teacher is specifically trained to teach students with disabilities. They are knowledgeable about the general education curriculum, modified curricula, and intervention strategies to support instruction in academics and behavior.

Paraprofessional

A paraprofessional, also referred to as an aide or paraeducator, is in the classroom to provide direct, individualized educational support for all students under the supervision of a general classroom teacher. The role of the paraprofessional is to support the student as he or she learns to access educational information independently.

School Psychologist

A school psychologist applies expertise in mental health, learning, and behavior, to help children and youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally.

Occupational Therapist (OT)

An occupational therapist assists students with the development of their fine-motor and sensory skills according to the students’ needs, inside or outside of class. Fine-motor skills refer to the movement of muscles used in a person’s fingers, hands, wrists, and arms.

Physical Therapist (PT)

A physical therapist (PT) assesses, diagnoses, restores, maintains, and enhances physical functions. They can assist children who are D/HH with balance difficulties, enhancing muscle strength, and executing gross motor movements.

Adaptive Physical Education Teacher (APE)

The adaptive physical education teacher (APE) is a physical education teacher who knows how to develop modifications and adaptions so that your child can enjoy gym and acquire fitness safely.

General Education Classroom Teacher

The general education teacher knows the content of each learner’s special education program, and makes accommodations, modifications, or adaptations to provide access to educational content, instruction, and assessments.


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