Learnings and Insight from Transitioned School Based SLP with Renee Brown, The Busy Speech Mom

Episode 121 December 13, 2022 00:35:07
Learnings and Insight from Transitioned School Based SLP with Renee Brown, The Busy Speech Mom
The Missing Link for SLPs
Learnings and Insight from Transitioned School Based SLP with Renee Brown, The Busy Speech Mom

Dec 13 2022 | 00:35:07

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Show Notes

In this episode, you’ll hear Renee Brown talking with Katie Widestrom-Landgraf about how she took up an opportunity to switch from being a medical SLP to being school based. Renee talks about aspects of being a school based SLP that she needed to relearn and update to meet current practice. She also talks about what’s worked for her to work collaboratively with teachers, and other duties SLPs may find themselves tasked with in the school setting.  A therapist who takes a holistic child led approach, Renee talks about the importance of advocacy not just for students, but also yourself, and the SLP profession. 

Visit FreshSLP.com/podcast for this episode's show notes, a full audio transcript and more great resources at the intersection of grad school and a successful SLP career.
Not a substitute for a formal SLP education or medical advice for patients/caregivers.
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Episode Transcript

The Missing Link for SLPs Podcast Full Transcript Mattie Murrey-Tegels 00:04 Hello, and welcome to this episode of the Missing Link for SLPs podcast. I am so, so, glad you are listening, and so enjoying this series like I am. I said in the previous episode, I'm not a school based SLP which is why Katie Widestrom-Landgraf is co-hosting this with me. And my goodness, these conversations, I'm loving what I'm learning. And I'm learning even though I work with pediatric clients in an outpatient setting, I am learning things that are just applicable to anywhere that we work as SLPs. Our next guest is Renee Brown. She is a medical SLP turned school based SLP. Her caseload consists of students from kindergarten to fifth grade with a full range of communication disorders. She sees most of her students in a three to one small group ratio, because she's been shifting her service delivery model to more intense and frequent one on one sessions that are shorter in duration. She's noticed that her younger students with severe communication disorders benefit from this delivery style, and she finds it important to focus on both activities of daily living and academically relevant content to maximize her students' gains and successes. I love student-led, client-led, patient-led approaches so this conversation you have coming up is really exciting. A little bit more about Renee. She is a licensed school based speech pathologist, a busy mom to Ellen and Jovi, a wife to Dave, a Frenchie mom to Max and Luna, and a self-proclaimed lifelong learner, and a small town Pennsylvanian. She received two ACE awards from ASHA for continuing education, and I'm sure she will receive more if she's a lifelong learner. She also has a degree and teaching certificate for elementary ed in Pennsylvania. When she's not working or creating SLP materials you can find her binge watching shows on Amazon Prime and Netflix, traveling, skiing, connecting with other awesome SLPs on Instagram, enjoying a glass of wine or a Margarita on the weekends, and being her number one fan for her kids. She has the whole baseball mom chair to prove it. You can find her on Instagram @thebusyspeechmom. You can email her at [email protected], and she has the TPT Store The Busy Speech Mom – so many things. This is a creator, a visionary, and she creates things for SLPs like us, like you who are listening to this podcast. So, welcome to this episode. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 02:47 Welcome back to A Day in the Life of a School Based SLP! Today, we have a colleague, Renee Brown, who currently works in the schools. I'm your host, Katie Widestrom-Landgraf. White's from Landgraf. Renee, thank you so much for joining us. We're so glad you're here. Renee Brown 03:05 Absolutely. I'm excited to be here, so thrilled to talk with other SLPs. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 03:10 Yes. So, I have to say the first question is always about your own origin story. What inspired you to become a speech language pathologist, and how did you end up in the school setting? Renee Brown 03:24 Wow, it has been a bumpy road, and it's exciting to share because it's not your straight path to speech path, I guess. I actually started out as an elementary education major. I graduated. So, I have my Bachelor's in elementary education and a teaching certificate that I have for kindergarten to sixth grade. What happened was my grandfather, who drove me to school my entire childhood, he was diagnosed with dementia after I had graduated college, and I – he started working with a speech therapist and I thought, wow. I didn't even know this existed. I really didn't even know that SLPs – I always thought about them only being school based, right? Because that's what I had been exposed to previously. So, I just – I fell in love with then also the geriatric population. So, I went back to school as a lifelong learner, and graduated as a speech language pathologist for my Masters and I worked in the medical setting for over 10 years. I even started my own business for fiberoptic endoscopic evaluations of swallowing. And – Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 04:34 Wow! Renee Brown Yeah. So, it – I've been everywhere! And then it just so happened that a school that my kids go to, a position opened up, and I thought you know what, how wonderful would it be to work in a setting and be with my kids? So, I went ahead and I took the plunge and changed settings. So, I've changed a lot of stuff over the years but I wouldn't change it for anything. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 05:03 So, Renee, talk to us a little bit about that shift from medical based speech language pathology to being a speech language pathologist in the school setting. How was it? Did it – was it easy? Was it tricky? Can you talk a little bit more about that shift specifically? Renee Brown 05:19 Oh, absolutely. Because you figure 10 years in the field as a medical SLP, then going into the schools – it was a little bit intimidating, to be honest, only because I wasn't familiar anymore with how they developed IEPs. It was definitely different. They were using IEPWriter. The only thing is I had change in the medical field, different types of software for billing and for documentation. So, I felt confident enough to be able to learn it, but that was a little bit intimidating. So, I had a lot of questions going into the interview, when I was interviewing to be a school based SLP. But I will say one thing, the pace is definitely different, and I welcomed that. It was a very nice pace, I should say, going from the medical field and to the schools. It's very busy. It is – they're both very busy, but in the schools, I just felt like I was able to make those deeper connections and see them through. Whereas in the medical setting, I might have seen somebody for four weeks, and then they were discharged. So, I felt like I was definitely connecting with people more at a deeper level. I realized I gave so much of myself to my job. I was working overtime. I was working unpaid hours, which really you're not even supposed to do. And then, when push came to shove, and it was time for me to leave and to move on with my career, I noticed that they replaced me within two days, and I felt – Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 06:51 Mhm. Renee Brown 06:52 I felt almost frustrated because I gave so much of myself, every aspect of myself, my life. If my kids were sick, I was going to work. I was asking my mom, Hey, can you watch my baby, my newborn baby. Can you watch my baby so I can go to work?” And even taking the time off for maternity, I felt guilty. And so, I couldn't believe that when it was time to basically change a setting or change a position into a different building, I just – I couldn't believe that I was so easily replaced. And so, after I had that experience, I was really motivated to set those professional boundaries and knew that I really needed to put my family first because I was replaceable in the end. I definitely had to do a lot of research and I had to take a lot more courses. I had two weeks to do so because they needed the speech therapist to start at the beginning of the school year. So, I gave my two week notice at the position I was at, and I thought “Oh my gosh, I need to read up because even though I'm an SLP, as you know, it's broad”. Every – we treat everything. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 08:04 Mhm. Renee Brown 08:04 And I thought I have no idea what really I'm going back into in our field and research and it changes so much. So, I did have to go in and do a lot of research before I took – that position started, for sure. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 08:20 What I think can be interesting too, about entering the school based setting from the medical setting, is that folks who work in schools don't realize that there can be people who join them working in the schools who have worked in settings other than schools. And so, you can sometimes step into that world, and there are presumed knowledge bases about things like IEP writing programs. But I have made that shift as well from medical to school based speech language pathology, and I had not heard of Due Process Solutions, which was the old program they were using back 20 years ago when I started. And I do think that is something worth mentioning, that when you do make those transitions, there will be a lot of people in that environment to help you and they won't realize that where you came from maybe had a different lens for viewing a plan of care versus an IEP, for example. Renee Brown 09:20 Right. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 09:20 Or the structure – a SOAP note versus a different type of note like a progress note. And so, I do think those things are really important to mention for sure. Renee Brown 09:29 Absolutely, because it's a huge shift. But I will say too, that I find the benefits of being a medical SLP and then going to the school setting, I felt like I had a lot of strengths that maybe I wouldn't have had, had I not made that shift. And then I worked with another SLP who always worked in a school setting, and that was beautiful because then she was able to share what she has always known, and we just kind of put our minds together and we made a perfect match for our setting. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 09:56 Oh, that's wonderful. So, speaking of your setting, let's talk about little bit more about your specific setting. Can you walk us through what a typical day feels like for you? And when you start, when you end, the actual day in the life of Renee? Renee Brown 10:16 Sure. A day in the life of Renee! Well, I'll say before school starts, before I even get there, it's rounding up the children, I have two kids, the calming of the dogs, feeding the cat. It's actually an absolute beautiful chaos before my workday begins at 8:00 o'clock. So, I also live five minutes from my school, so that makes it nice as well. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 10:37 Oh, yeah. Renee Brown 10:38 Yeah, that makes it so nice. So, my workday starts at 8:00 o'clock. So, I get there. I actually changed my prep time to 8:00 o'clock, first thing in the morning. And I would say that for anybody who was considering being a school SLP, or is in the school setting, if they're able to change their prep period, I prefer the 8:00 o'clock time because I can't pull any kids because they're just arriving to school. So, I found that that really worked well for me because I was able to catch up on documentation and such. So, from 8:00 o’clock to 8:45, that's my prep. So, that's why I get to really do different things. Typically, it is the documentation period. And then from 8:45 until noon, it's just a bunch of sessions, as many sessions as you possibly can imagine. And then I have lunch, which because I live five minutes away from my work, I come home. I let my dogs out! And then I head back to school and work until 3:30. I have one duty in the schools, and that is Walker duty. I will say that last year, I had three, and how I was able to be assigned only one duty this year was because I showed them, “Hey, look, this is my caseload. This is what it looks like. This is what my documentation is. I need to bill for my students. It is just not feasible for me to have three duties. I'm not able to do my job as an SLP”. And I think that's worth mentioning, because I think a lot of SLPs, they just take their work home. And I set that boundary and said, “Listen, I can't – I work full time here. I have children. I have to run to basketball, to dance, to baseball, to softball, to gymnastics. My work needs to stay at work so I can have a life outside of it”. So, yeah, I was able to change my schedule from having three duties into having one, so. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 12:36 And so, Renee, if you could clarify for folks who are listening, when you talk about a duty – now, you said Walker duty. So, like, tell us for example, what does it mean to have Walker duty, for people who don't know exactly what that means? Renee Brown 12:50 Sure. So, basically, at 3:00 o'clock, I go to the gym. They have the students arrive in the gym, and we release the students to their parents from 3:00 to 3:30. So, I'm in charge of just making sure everybody is there, making sure that they're going home with the right person. And so, that is considered a duty. Before last year, I had drop off duty, which is very similar, only the parents are dropping the students off. And then I also had lunch duty for a half hour. So, yeah. So, for 30 minutes. Last year, I would be in the cafeteria and basically open up milk cartons for children, and I – I think that's great, but I was like, “Hey, I have evaluations I need to do, and I need to pull my kids. I need to see my kids:. So, that is all well and good, but yeah, that is what that can look like in the school settings if you don’t advocate for yourself. You definitely can get a lot of duties, for sure. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 13:53 And I think – when you spoke to, “I need to keep work at work, and then have home time be home time”. That is a really important message and those tips to kind of help people think about how they might have those conversations in their own settings, I think is really important. You mentioned, instead of having me open milk cartons for 30 minutes, gosh, wouldn't it make sense to have that be time spent on documentation and billing? I like to remind administration, periodically, that as speech language pathologists, we're one of the few revenue generating sources within a school setting. And I think that sometimes can be a helpful thing when they're trying to figure out, well, why shouldn’t you have to do what everybody else has to do? That can kind of help set some parameters around how we might need to spend time differently – and not just that, but that seems to land with administrators in a really specific way, so. Renee Brown 14:52 It really does. And I have found – and I do have great administration, but I have found that a lot of other people, they don't really understand what we do. They don't know what our day looks like. So, they're not – I don't feel like they were trying to undermine my degree in my specialty, I think they just didn't understand. And because before I was getting the job done, they thought ‘Oh, wow. Well, then she has the time to do these duties”. And no. I was bringing stuff home and working beyond my contract hours. So, I basically advocated for myself, I said, “I'm not going to do that anymore. My kids are getting older. I need to have a life outside of work, because it's so important to have – make connections with your family and have meaningful relationships with other people. So, I put that first and brought that to the work environment, and they responded well with that. They – I didn't get any pushback. There wasn't any kind of ultimatum. They said, “I hear what you're saying. Let's work together”. And that is what we came up with. We compromised. I said, “Okay, I could do the afternoon duty. That's not a problem, because I'll see my kids till three o'clock. And then I don't mind”. And they said I could even, if I needed to, stay for one reason or another, I would just have to let them know, “Hey, I can't make it to that duty”. So, they will work with you. I really feel like a lot of them would be – they would respond well. They just don't understand really what we do. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 16:21 I do think you're right. I think so much of where we have those misunderstandings is that people just don't really understand how the role of a speech language pathologist is different. And that's where we become advocates – advocates not just for ourselves, but for the profession as well. Renee Brown 16:38 Absolutely. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 16:39 Yeah. So, I think we can infer that you must work with little people because you're walking them to cars. But can you tell us exactly the age range that you work with, and some specifics of your caseload? Renee Brown 16:50 Sure. So, I work with students from kindergarten until fifth grade. I do the preschool screenings at the beginning of the year also. Though – they are seen though by the intermediate unit, by another SLP, but I just help identify and refer so that they can get services. I do that at the beginning of the year. But I see kindergarten to fifth grade. I primarily treat speech sound disorders. So, I've been in the school setting itself for five years. So, this year was the first time that I was assigned an autistic child. She's in kindergarten. I love her so much. I really feel like I missed my calling there. Because this year, and having her now on my caseload has just – it's just changed everything. I feel like I've made so many changes to my speech room. I do have an actual speech room. I was able to get out of a closet! That's also something that we can do if we advocate for ourselves! Yeah. And then being reintroduced for myself to AAC, because I haven't seen it since the medical setting, and a different form of AAC and just relearning just language development itself because I graduated in 2008 from speech language pathology, and just the way that we do things now is a lot different. It is a lot different! So, I'm not ashamed to say that I am still learning and still growing as a speech therapist, and this little girl has just brought so much understanding and has made me a better speech therapist, for sure. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 18:32 Wow, Renee, I think our students are some of our best teachers. And when you talk about how there's something new to learn, students will require us to rise to their needs and expectations, and that's kind of one of the coolest things of our profession is that we can be in two years, 10 years, 20 years, and we also get to evolve with our practices – Renee Brown 19:00 Right. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 19:00 – and with the ways we are thinking about and approaching things. So, let's talk a little bit about some of your favorite aspects of being a school based SLP. Renee Brown 19:10 I love that I am able to have these connections with kids. I – it almost makes me feel like a kid because I get to do a lot of play based therapy. It’s child led. I get to see how they progress over the years. It's actually sad when some of them get discharged. I'm glad that they've met their goals. Yeah, I think that's probably the most beautiful thing about being a speech therapist in the school setting is that I really get to see these kids grow. And one thing that our school does, and I thought about it the first year that I was there, is they have students when they're seniors and they graduate from the high school, they do a “graduation walk” in the elementary school. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 19:52 Oh. Renee Brown 19:52 So, they can go – they wear their cap and gown and they walk through the school, and they see all of their teachers. And I just looked at the teacher's faces, and I – they were, “I had him in kindergarten. I had her in third grade”. And they were just crying. I thought, oh my gosh, that's going to be me in 10 years. I'm going to see some of these kids that I worked with and advocated for. Because there is a lot of advocating in the schools for kids to get services, and for people to understand. That's going to be me. I'm going to be sobbing in the corner, for sure, when I see that first grade go through that I've ever worked with. Yeah. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 20:30 That will be really special. Renee Brown 20:32 Yeah. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 20:32 I actually work in a high school, Renee. And so, I get to finish my time with students with a graduation ceremony, which is pretty special as well. The first time I had little people that I'd worked with in summer school, who came to me in high school, that kind of is mind blowing. And then you see them – you see them graduating. It is a special thing, for sure. Renee Brown 20:54 Right. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 20:32 So, of course, I have to ask you about some challenges as well. What are some challenges that you run into in this setting? Renee Brown 21:02 So, there's several challenges, just like anything. I would say the first challenge would be a schedule. Scheduling is – Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 21:11 Mhm. Yes. Renee Brown 21:12 – that would be step one. There's several challenges. Step one, I would say, because that's the very first thing that you deal with in the beginning of the year – Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 21:19 Yes. Renee Brown 21:19 – with the scheduling. And we – actually, this year, probably out of all the years that I've been a speech therapist at this district, this year was the most challenging because they made some changes with rotational blocks. And those rotational blocks didn't align every single day, they changed and the times changed. So, luckily, I have a relationship with the teachers. I think that's so important to start off with, to show that you have that respect, and you understand what their job is too, and kind of let them know why you're there, because they think of the children as their kids. So, you need to really voice, “Hey, I want the same thing as you. I want this kid to succeed”. So, I had a lot of conversations with some teachers, and we were able to come up with a schedule. There was a little bit of pushback initially, but then when I said, “Hey… “ – basically, what happened was our – they don't like you to pull from reading and math. I'm sure you're aware of that, and you've heard that. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 22:23 Yes, yes. Renee Brown 21:19 So, part of the standardized testing from the state, their plan was to integrate as much reading and math as possible. So, there are some days where it is just reading and math. So, just kind of working with the teachers, and letting them know these students need to be pulled for speech. And really, if you think about it, a lot of the younger ones for reading especially, they're not going to succeed in reading if they're not getting the sounds. And so, showing them that I was using high frequency and sight words for articulation and speech sound disorders was actually helping them. So, just showing how I can help them in reading. Like let me help you, type thing. That helped with scheduling, for sure. So, scheduling would probably be the first and foremost issue in the schools, I would say. Yeah., Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 23:17 I think it's interesting to kind of help make those connections with our colleagues, and say what we work on. I always say what we work on is the foundation of the house. So, know that when a student is reading, they're talking to themselves in their heads. And so, when you think about it, they're manipulating sounds in their heads. And so, when you think about how speech and language contribute to the success of a student reading – Renee Brown 23:44 Right. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 23:44 – know that reading – I think it was Pinker, who said reading is bolted onto the oral language system. It's not the other way around. And so, I think sometimes having those really pragmatic discussions that help people understand that we're combining superpowers – Renee Brown 23:44 Right. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 24:03 – can pay dividends with scheduling later. So, I think that makes a lot of sense, Renee, for sure. Renee Brown 24:11 Right. And then something else that has – came about just this year was that, again, like I said, I understand AAC, but I was exposed to a new device that I wasn't familiar with, and I needed some training on how to make folders, how to make buttons, and they brought a trainer in. It was a two hour and 45 minute training, but two hours and 30 minutes of it consisted of that trainer trying to talk me out of basically a language philosophy that I was working on with that student. And I would honestly say for two hours and 30 minutes, I would say to them, “I hear what you're saying. I understand what you're saying. I've been exposed”. Now I'm learning new things as well, because Gestalt language processing is new to me. It is. It’s not something that – when I was in grad school back in 2008, we didn't talk about that. But it was something that I saw that the student was benefiting from. So, I was going to continue to do that with the student. And I would just keep redirecting the trainer, just saying, “I hear what you're saying. Can you show me how to create a folder?!”, but for two hours and 30 minutes – I wish I was exaggerating – that was the conversation. Because I knew too – yeah, I – and I think it's so important to know that you are the specialist as an SLP. You are the professional, and there are going to be others that might not agree with what you are doing, but know that you are a specialist, and you know the student. They are there just to – in this case, she was there to train me on how to create the buttons and create the folders, not to teach me how to treat my students. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 26:03 I think that's a really interesting thing that you talk about and bring up, and I would suspect that some of our colleagues have run into that as well, where I think sometimes a conversation – especially if you have somebody who is focused on the technology aspect, might inadvertently try to trend a therapy towards AAC, when the therapy is language and the AAC is the modality. And I think that's where sometimes we, again, have an opportunity to have those information exchanges with folks who may not understand how this contributes to what the student is really working on in terms of developing their communication skills. Renee Brown 26:47 Right. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 26:47 So, Renee, I have to ask you, you have some passions that carry over outside of your school day. It's my understanding that you have a TPT store aligned with being a speech language pathologist in the school setting. Is that right? Renee Brown 27:03 Yes, I do. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 27:05 Can you talk to us about that? Renee Brown 27:07 Yes. So, how that kind of came into play was I saw that there were some things that I needed to work with my students. Again, that medical background, it was so – it’s so evidence and research based. It's set up in a way I feel like it programmed me to want to do things a different way, and to look at things, bigger perspectives. How can I do it? And then the background with elementary education, how can I do things so that I am treating the student as a whole, so that I am helping every aspect of their life? So, academically, social, emotional – just everything. So, that why I started creating and making these therapy materials to meet the students’ needs as best that I can. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 27:58 Could you tell us the name of your TPT store? Renee Brown 28:00 Sure. It's called The Busy Speech Mom, because that is me in a nutshell! Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 28:06 That’s great. Renee Brown 28:06 Busy. Busy working full time in the schools, and then when 3:30 hits, then I'm running the kids to activities until like 8:00 or 9:00 o'clock at night! Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 28:16 Wow. Renee Brown 28:17 And I work on my products in the car, actually. A lot of the times, a lot of things I create, it’s in the vehicle while my child is practicing a sport. Yeah. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 28:28 Wow. Well, thanks for doing that, because we have the potential to benefit from your work in the car, it sounds like. So, thanks for doing that. Renee Brown 28:37 Yeah. [crosstalk] Well, and honestly, a lot of the times, those materials – so, like I developed the high frequency and sight word strips, and the academic vocabulary strips to show the teachers that we're worried about reading, that we're worried about phonology. “Hey, look. These are the high frequency sight words that you use for adults and sight word lists, and I have them right here. So, we're working on that in therapy. We're working on it because it actually helps the carry over for speech. So, it's just kind of a beautiful thing that that’s also something that they’re working on and reading”. And then the teacher saw that, and they thought, Oh, well, yeah, that sounds great”. So, basically, it was a way to connect with those teachers and show them, really, that speech and their expertise can work together to really benefit the student. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 29:24 So, Renee, when you think about what keeps you coming back, day after day, year after year, what's your big “why”? Why do you keep doing this? Renee Brown 29:34 One thing that keeps me going always and no matter – because as a school based SLP, it does have its challenges, but you have those students that just pull on your heartstrings. The students that teachers would come up and say, “Hey, look. I don't know what to do. I can't understand the student. Can you help? What can I do?” And then you see that student. So, I had a student in first grade, and now he is in fifth grade, and he's one that I just – he was my first student, and that I can remember really researching because he has apraxia, and it was severe. So, now I see him in fifth grade, and he is speaking. The teachers – they don't have any issues understanding what he's saying. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 29:24 Oh. Renee Brown 30:28 And that's what brings me back, is I'm helping these kids create their own futures. Because without speech, without us giving them what they need therapeutically to progress, then they might get looked over. So, now, I always think of it like I'm making such a difference in these kids, and I'm creating the future that they deserve. So, that's what keeps me going back to the schools. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 30:55 That’s wonderful. Renee Brown 30:55 Yeah. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 30:56 So, thinking about our listeners, I have one last question for you. Renee Brown 31:00 Sure. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 30:56 If you had a piece of advice for folks either looking to transition into the schools, maybe they've been practicing for a while and they're looking at a different setting, or somebody who is soon to be graduating from a Master's program and they're trying to decide like is – do you have a piece of advice or something that you would have wanted to know when you were considering working in this setting? Renee Brown 31:30 I wish it – so, this is what's beautiful about social media, right, is that you can reach out to other SLPs. It's easy to find other SLPs in so many different settings. I would reach out to somebody and just say, “This is what I'm thinking about. Can you give me any more insights?” And I think anyone, really, would be happy to share that. I wish I had that. I didn't have that. Back in 2008 there was no Instagram. So, there was Facebook, but it's not – it wasn't like it is now. So, I would just basically say if you can reach out to others on the social media platform and just ask whatever question that you can think of, or any worries or concerns, and they will do the best to steer you in the right direction. Because I wish I did have that, for sure. When you do your externships or your internships, it's really just a glimpse, right? It's a short glimpse into each kind of setting. You don't really get to build those connections. And you don't really get to talk about pensions, health care, all those different things, days off. Now, I have days off that I can spend with my kids during the holidays. Whereas, before, I used to have 11 days off in the entire year. So, things like that to really think about, that does kind of impact your decision making process, I think, too. Because it's – when I was young and didn't have kids, 11 days off in a year wasn't a huge deal. But when you have two children, they get sick. Yeah. It can lead into some problems, so. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 33:20 That is great insight. Oh, Renee, this has been amazing. Thank you so much for your time and your thoughts. Yes. Renee Brown 33:29 Well, thanks for having me. I hope that I helped others and gave them a great insight into what it's like being a school SLP. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 33:38 Oh, I have no doubt. Thank you. Renee Brown 33:39 Yeah. Absolutely. And I'm definitely open, if anyone ever had a question. You were asking if everyone ever had a question? Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 33:45 Okay, yeah. Renee Brown 33:46 So, yeah. Sure, they can message me, for sure. Katie Widestrom-Landgraf 33:49 That's wonderful. Thank you, Renee. Mattie Murrey-Tegels 33:56 So, you can tell that Renee and Katie just really hit it off, so many things to talk about, so many little rabbit trails. To check out more what Renee Brown has to offer check out her Instagram handle @thebusyspeechmom, email her at [email protected], and check out for sure her TPT Store The Busy Speech Mom. She's super active on Instagram, has a super big following, and she loves connecting with other SLPs. She creates these materials to maximize her students overall potential and she will help your students as well. Thank you so much for joining us on this episode of the Missing Link for SLPs podcast, a Day in the Life of a School Based SLP. Please help us out by liking, sharing, subscribing, tell others about us. We are closing in on 50,000. I would love to make 50,000 by the 1st of the year of 2023. And yeah, stay fresh! Reach out if you want me to include anything in these upcoming episodes a few months down the road, we're pretty booked out, let me know. And have a Happy Thanksgiving and a great New Year!

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