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LIVE WEBINAR: Why Are My Treatment Sessions Not Going as Planned? Understanding, Analyzing and Prioritizing Treatment of the Intensive Needs Student: An OT and PT Perspective

Melissa Gerber, OTD, OTR/L & Josephine Bardabelias, PT

Monday, December 12, 2022
8:00 am – 3:00 pm EST

Early $225.00* | Regular $250.00 

*Early registration must be received 14 days prior to webinar (November 28, 2028). 


Strategies to Plan and Initiate Activities for Your Most Challenging Students

Are your treatment sessions not going as planned?
Do you find yourself dealing with behavior rather than working on student goals? 

Many of us have experienced the growing trend of students with intensive needs remaining in their home districts, in the least restrictive environment. They often have significant behaviors, language difficulties and cognitive deficits in addition to sensorimotor issues. They have diagnoses of autism, Down syndrome and various intellectual disabilities including students with mental health conditions.  Many can also be described as multiply disabled.

As school-based therapists, we need to better identify and understand the needs of these students.  This will allow us to plan appropriate outcomes and effective treatment sessions, along with understanding what progress looks like for this population.

This course will help therapists better plan a practical continuum of treatment. The course will address where to begin, how to prioritize treatment, and how to progress. Participants will gain an understanding of realistic expectations for this population, what to do if treatment does not work, how to deal with behavioral challenges within our session as well as how to approach the child that has difficulty focusing and following directions.  Strategies to manage meltdowns and children who are non-verbal will be included.  In addition, the impact of Covid 19 on our treatment sessions will also be discussed.

The information in this course can be applied to lower functioning children such as those that are non-verbal, have an intellectual disability, cannot establish or maintain eye contact or visual regard, and do not have body awareness.

The materials in this course are not geared toward the treatment of medically fragile and non-ambulatory students.


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Learning Objectives
Participants completing this course will be able to:

  • Learn an organized and systematic approach to treatment of this challenging population that will help you to improve your treatment outcomes.

  • Learn what is driving interfering behaviors from a sensory-motor perspective.

  • Understand why your students act or react the way they do, and thereby reduce your own frustration when treating this population.

Target Audience


Course Level 

Beginner to Intermediate


Melissa Gerber, OTD, OTR/L

Melissa Gerber  is a school based occupational therapist for the past 18 years. She began her career at NYU Medical Center-Rusk Institute, where she rotated through adult and pediatric programs. She is the president of 4MYKIDSOT, a private practice conducting preschool and early intervention evaluations and treatment.

Dr. Gerber receives a speaking fee for the presentation. Dr. Gerber has no relevant non-financial relationships to disclose.

Josephine Bardabelias, PT 

Josephine Bardabelias has over 30 years of experience including supervisory roles working in a variety of settings, with a focus in pediatrics. Throughout her career she has treated children in acute care, N.I.C.U., early intervention, private care, and school-based facilities.

Josephine receives a speaking fee for the presentation. Josephine has no relevant non-financial relationships to disclose.

Course Schedule


8:00 am – 3:00 pm EST

8:00-8:30 am – Intro: Current Trends in Education /Evolution of Therapies/Caseload in the school

8:30-9:00 am – General School Based Therapist Frustrations Trends and Burnout MASLACH- Burnout inventory

9:00 -9:30 am – Identifying the disruptive behavior and possible cause

9:30 -10:00am – Understanding your student and how they may interpret their environment

10:15-10:30 – Break

10:30-11:30 – Where do we start? Setting your students up for success Evaluation Tool used to assess Intensive Needs Do they need treatment/ What type? Push in or Pull out?

11:30-12:00 – Video’s Case study

12:00-12:45 – LUNCH

12:45-1:00 – Review Case study with treatment intervention options

1:00-1:45 – Treatment for Kinesthetic sense

1:45-2:45 – Treatment Continuum/Case Study

2:45-3:00 – Questions


Educational Credits

6 contact hours

A post test will be required at the conclusion of the webinar

Approved for 6 contact hours by NYSED’s State Board for PT.

Application has been made to the NJBPTE for CE approval.

AOTA-Approved Provider ProgramTSI is an AOTA Approved Provider of Professional Development. PD activity approval ID# Pending. This Live PD is offered at 6 contact hours or .6 CEU’s, Intermediate level, Domain of OT: OT Service Delivery. AOTA does not endorse specific course content, products, or clinical procedures.


Group Discount

Early $225.00* | Regular $250.00

*Early registration must be received 14 days prior to seminar
VALID UNTIL Nov. 28, 2021

3 or more registrants – Early –  $212.94 | Regular – $236.60 (use code group3)

In order to qualify for the group discounted rate, registrations MUST all be received within 24 hours (of the first registration) if registering on-line, and in the same envelope if registering by mail.  PLEASE NOTE: Registrations received after a group has been processed will not be eligible for the discount.

To ensure that all group members receive the appropriate discount, choose a group name and be sure that each person registering adds the name in the “other notes” section at checkout.