1. Devon Health Care Group - Paperwork & Documentation:
    When getting started with Devon Health Care Group, we will send you a 'welcome aboard' email that will contain information and documentation needed to get you setup and 'ready to go'. Below is a detailed list of what we will need from you:

    • Resume, License Number, and Background check -- To get started, we need a copy of your resume (work history), license number and a copy of your background check. Most therapists can obtain a copy of their background check from a previous or current employer. If not, Devon has the capability to run a background check for you. If we run a background check for you, both Devon and the therapist will split the cost. In order to run a background check, we will need: Name, Address, SS# and Date of Birth.

    • ICA (Independent Contractor Agreement) & W9 -- Devon will email you a W9 form and ICA to review, sign and send back to us. We ask that you scan and email the form back to us, or fax it to 610-465-9400.

  2. Outdated IEP:
    Many of the IEP's we receive from the school are outdated. We try to catch this and notify the school does but sometimes they still become outdated. The school basically says to "start service" and then take the first session or two to assess the child, talk to the parent(s) and do a brief update of the IEP. Do you feel comfortable with what that would look like? I can send you one someone did if not. Ok thx!

  3. PA (Pennsylvania) - Background Check Documentation: Below is the information needed to obtain all three (3) required background/clearances for work in the state of Pennsylvania. All three (3) must be completed by the healthcare professional.

    1. State Police Criminal History Record - PENNSYLVANIA STATE CRIMINAL HISTORY RECORD: https://epatch.state.pa.us - This can be done online and the results are fairly quick (1-2 days). After the therapist completes their online application, they receive a CONTROL NUMBER. Please provide us with this number and also keep it for your records. Devon will enter this number into the system to verify that your background check is cleared. The therapist will also be able to check their own results on the website as well. A 'hard copy' of the results will be mailed to the therapist if there is any kind of criminal background found.

      Fee: $10.00 - payable to Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
      *Applicants may apply online through PATCH and obtain their report online, or Applicants may also use Form SP-164, Pennsylvania State Police Request for Criminal Record Check and mail a money order to the PA State Police with the application. The form may also be downloaded at the above site.

    2. Dept of Public Welfare Child Abuse Report - PA Dept of Public Welfare: www.dpw.state.pa.us - This one takes some time (about 10-14 business days). The healthcare professional needs to do this themselves. They MUST print, fill out and mail in the application form and the waiver, to have them send the results to us (Devon). The results are ONLY mailed... They do not have anything that you can check online. The therapist must fill out the attached waiver, so Devon Health Care Group receives the results. When filling out the application, the therapist needs to list all family that they've previously lived with. If they need to add more then what the application allows, they can add an extra sheet of paper to the application. The application form for this can be found at the following link:

      Fee: $10.00 - payable to Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
      *For status of a request, please call the Department of Public Welfare, Childline and Abuse Registry at (717) 783-6211.

    3. Federal Criminal History Report (CHRI) – FBI Report (Fingerprints & Multi-Step Process) - www.pa.cogentid.com - This one can be done fairly quickly as well (1-3 days). The healthcare professional needs to do this themselves. They go to the website and fill out the info, then get a card that they bring to a fingerprinting place. They can find a local fingerprinting place through the below website so that they can find the closest one to them. The therapist needs to make sure they check the "Education" box for background checks. This will ensure that the school/district can go in online and verify their background info. The therapist will be mailed the results and the school district will be able to see results online. Below is the info and link for this application:

      Fee: $27.50 - pay online

  4. Make-up time:
    If a student cancels therapy within a reasonable time, you can just reschedule (as long as the make-up falls within that month). If the month passes, they will need to forfeit that time. The only way make-up time can be extended into the following month is if you (the therapist) cancels therapy. Please do NOT schedule make-up time once the month has passed, unless it has been pre-approved by the school and you receive that approval from us. The make-up time request needs to initially come from the parent(s). The school will NOT reimburse us for make-up time that has not been pre-approved, therefore, we will not be able to pay you for that time.

  5. Updating old or outdated IEP's:
    When the IEP expires, you'll typically get notified by us, or the school, to update the goals and time frame recommendations in minutes per month, even if it's the same. The school asks that you do this on a word document. You do not have to physically meet for the IEP. If the school has questions, they will contact you. You are not required to meet in person, but you will be compensated for meeting either in person or online or via conference call. You can send the updated IEP to us and we will forward it over to the school.

    The school psychologist coordinates all testing and the intervention specialist coordinates things from there.

  6. Constant Contact:
    Devon Health Care Group sends out an informational and very important monthly newsletter via email, through a website called 'Constant Contact'. This emailed newsletter will provide you with important updates and information from Devon. Please make sure to check your inbox for these emails and read through all the content. If you do receive our 'Constant Contact' email, we ask that you keep an eye on your "junk/spam" folder. For some reason, depending on your email settings, that is where it ends up.

    It is sometimes difficult to reach out individually to chat (as much as we like to), with everyone to address questions or issues that are imperative to the school to deal with. This is the underlying reason for why we instituted this system. We thank you in advance for understanding and taking the time to read it.

  7. (ESY) Extended School Year:
    For those of you who have been asked by parents, or who have children in your care you feel need ESY therapy for the summer, here is something that was sent from the school for the written request (to be sent in at the beginning of May if possible).
    "There are four major topics to be covered in the discussion"…

    • Regression of Education - In relationship to how a typical peer may decline in the amount of information taught within the school year, evidence must support a student with disabilities regressing at a greater rate in comparison to the typical peers at the grade level of the child. The key term here is "evidence" to support the discussion.

    • Sustainability of Education - The topic of a student with disabilities having the ability to sustain information over a time period when school is not in session in comparison to a typical peer is to be a discussion. This is very similar to the discussion of regression. Again, evidence must support the discussion.

    • Recoupment of Education - As you are aware, when students return to school there is a period of time needed for review of past educational experiences to bring the students "up-to-speed". The discussion, along with evidence, must show a student with disabilities needing significantly more time to accomplish the task of review and retaining information in comparison to the typical peers. There is nothing to state how long is considered normal in this area, therefore the need for a discussion, evidence, and agreement.

    • Documentation - As always, the key element to anything completed in Special Education is documentation. The discussion, along with the evidence supporting the decision, is vital to successful ESY implementation.

    If the school specifically asks for one of your students we will contact you. If not, please send your recommendations to us. The school will notify us if the student is approved for extended school year services. There is no need to write up recommendations if your student does not or will not qualify for services in the summer. If you have specific questions please let us know. If we cannot answer your questions, we will forward them to the appropriate person at the school.

    Additional ESY/Comp/Make-up Time Questions:

    • Question - The child's mom/dad stated that the child is supposed to be getting therapy during the summer until additional owed minutes are met (minutes that the child missed when services were not provided last year). How do I address this concern with the parent(s)?

    • Answer - just to clarify: the initial request for ESY has to come from the parent(s) and the therapist has to write the request based on the criteria above (ESY), if you think it is warranted. For Comp Time or Make Up which is what this sounds like it is, the parent(s) has to talk to her IS at the school or she can call the related services coordinator at the school, and she will let us know if approved. If you could pass this info onto the parent(s) in case they are not aware of the process that would be much appreciated.

    Sample of an ESY Recommendation:

    Date: 4/3/13
    Childs First & Last Name

    To whom it may concern:

    A_____ has been receiving speech and language services to target articulation and language skills. She has made good progress in producing sounds in isolation, words and phrases. However, A. continues to have difficulty in producing sounds in sentences and carrying these skills over to structured and unstructured conversation. In addition, she has difficulty in using sound/letter correspondence and is unable to use knowledge of sounds to write simple CVC words independently. As a first grade student, she should be able to use the knowledge to write simple words and sentences.

    A. has made progress in answering questions and following directions if it follows a predictable pattern. If the question or direction asked is not what she is expecting, she will be unable to answer the question or follow the direction correctly. This indicates that her receptive language skills or what she understands is still an area of difficulty for her. This will continue to make it difficult for her to answer questions appropriately and follow directions both written and oral from her classroom teacher. She has increased her ability and is consistently using the correct pronoun and sentence structure containing "is, are, was, and were" in her sentences. A. continues to need to expand her sentences and to use irregular forms of plurals and verbs in her sentences.

    The area of most concern and the need for extended school year services is in A's retention and use of presented concepts. It is seen that with even a small break (two weeks) between therapy session, A. regresses in her progress and it takes between two-three sessions to regain the skills that she had been using consistently before the break. In the fall, when A. was sick and there were four or more weeks between therapy sessions, she did not retain any information that was targeted in the weeks previous to her illness. As A. continues to show skills that are behind her age and grade level if she continues to regress over long breaks such as summer vacation (10 weeks) she will not recoup what was taught in this school year in a reasonable amount of time and she will continue to fall behind her peers in her ability to expressively communicate which could result in frustration leading to a decrease in her overall expressive communication.

    It is recommended that A. receive extended school year services to target speech and language goals. Without intervention in the above stated areas, A. will continue to show speech and language skills below grade level impacting her ability to complete assignments, understand curriculum vocabulary, and express her verbal and written thoughts and ideas effectively and efficiently in the school and home environment.

    Please feel free to contact me with questions, comments, or concerns


    ______________ M.A CCC-SLP

  8. Time Sheet Information:
    Time sheets are due by Monday at noon (12PM) for the two previous weeks. We ask that you send your time sheet via email, using the word document we've created for you or by scanning it. Please list the child's name, as well as how many minutes you worked with the child during your therapy session. We also ask that you list the type of activity and what you worked on in a sentence or two. This can be written in a separate word document or on the time sheet. Further instruction is listed on the time sheet documentation.

    Devon will email you a Time Sheet in a word document format that can be saved to your computer. The document will be able to be opened, edited, then saved to your desktop or folder on a weekly basis. Please attach the weekly time sheet in an email and send to "timesheet@devonhealthcaregroup.com". We ask that you attach a short 2-3 sentence note explaining what was worked on during the session. This can be done on the time sheet or on a separate word doc attachment and there is no specific format. If you are receiving mileage, please list the number of miles driven on the time sheet. We would prefer that you list this next to the day you met with the child, however, you can also list this at the bottom of the page.

    Additional important time sheet info:

    1. Please use one (1) time sheet for each child that is assigned.

    2. Please clearly list your name and clinic location (if applicable) on the time sheet, next to 'contractor', as well as the week ending date, child's name (first initial, last name) with specialty (OT, PT, SLP, etc), and monthly IEP minutes.

    3. Please DO NOT exceed the monthly IEP minutes on the timesheet. If you go over for the monthly minutes, we can NOT bill for the time and will not be able to reimburse you.

    4. Fifteen (15) minutes of indirect time are allowed for each one (1) hour of ongoing therapy. Please clearly list the indirect time on the time sheet, separate from the direct time.

    5. Fifteen (15) minutes of time are allowed for quarterly progress notes. Please do NOT bill for more then that. We will only be able to reimburse you a maximum of 15 minutes.

    6. There is no 'minimum' time allowed for IEP updates. Please bill for as much time as necessary for IEP updates.

    7. There is no 'minimum' time allowed for evaluations. Make sure to bill for testing time, report writing, scheduling, document review, mileage and drive-time (only if drive-time has been approved prior to the evaluation).

    8. To avoid any confusion, the IEP minutes/month (or week if designated as such), for each child will be written right on the time sheet (with a spot to record what is remaining for that month after each pay period).

    9. There is also a spot for make-up minutes, if pre-approved by the school. Please note the date that is being made-up, must be delineated, or it cannot be paid.

    10. Last year there were so many hours spent each month tracking some folks down to discuss why IEP hours were over, or why duplicate time sheets were sent, that this year we decided we will have to charge a $20 "stop payment" fee for duplicate timesheet submittals, (or duplicate date/sessions on different time sheets), unless of course you have checked with us to find out, ahead of time.

    11. Please double-check your records for duplicates. This can best be avoided by saving your weekly or bi-weekly timesheets to a 'folder' on your desktop and double-checking your email to make sure you're not resending a timesheet you've already submitted.

    12. Timesheets MUST be submitted by the first payroll "cut off" of the new month or there will be a $15 administrative charge. For example – If you work any day in September, we must receive your timesheet no later than Sunday October, 6th at 12pm (noon), which is the "cut-off' date/time for the first payroll date in October.

    13. Please note that the school this year will be strictly adhering to their policy from the past, in that timesheets received over 60 days from the date of therapy will not be paid.
    14. *Time sheets are due Sunday by 12pm (noon) at the latest. Any time sheets arriving after that cut off time will be processed for the following payroll period.

  9. Progress Reports:
    Progress reports/notes are due quarterly (once every 9 weeks). There is no specific form or document for progress notes. Progress notes are just a paragraph on a word document with PLOP (Present Levels Of Performance) and where things are in relation to the goals, as well as how the progress is going.

  10. Evaluations - Procedures & Paperwork (ETR/IEP):
    When completing an evaluation, you must use the Ohio Department of Education standard ETR and IEP 'dynamic' forms. If you are recommending services the IEP needs to be completed at the same time as the ETR. The Ohio Department of Education standard ETR & IEP forms can be found on the Ohio Dept of Education website – www.edresourcesohio.org/index.php?slug=ohio-required-forms

    The IEP is to include goals and time frame recommendation (written in 'Section 7' in minutes per month). It is very important that you not only email us the 'dynamic' ETR & IEP PDF forms, but that you also print and 'physically' sign the ETR signature page and scan/email or fax it to us. We must receive a 'physically' signed (hand written) ETR signature page, scanned/emailed or faxed, in order for the evaluation report to be valid, complete and accepted by the school. You will not be reimbursed for the evaluation until we have all of this required documentation.

    Additional Evaluation Procedures & Information:

    • Please reach out to the family within 24-48 hours of accepting an evaluation to schedule with the family. The family is expecting your call. Please notify us once contact is made and an evaluation date is set.

    • It is very important that you stay in close communication with us throughout the entire process of the evaluation, including: confirming you've received our emails, updates on contacting the family, updates on scheduling, updates on how the evaluation went and updates on the status of the evaluation report you are writing and when you will have the report to us by.

    • Please use the Ohio State Dept of Education evaluation 'dynamic' ETR/IEP forms and make sure to physically sign and scan/email or fax the ETR signature page. If you are recommending services, make sure to fill out your section of the IEP and include goals/objectives and time frame recommendations in minutes per month. Please send both the ETR and IEP together if you are recommending services.

    • The completed evaluation report should be sent directly to us, via scan/email or fax, so we can forward to the school. Please do not send or share the report with the parents.

    • We ask that you notify us immediately if you are unable to connect with the family within 3-4 days after your initial attempt to contact them. We also ask that you fill out and keep a 'parent log' with your contact attempts.

    • Some evaluations are sent to us from the school with no specific meeting and/or 'due' date. We ask that you schedule the evaluation within one to two weeks of connecting with the family. After the evaluation testing is completed, please have the report to us within 7-10 days.

    • If you have difficulty with parent communication (or keeping appointment), that you keep track of it on a copy of the "log" we included. Increasingly the school is in need of a "summary" of communication issues and this makes it easier for everyone if it is done all along.

    • Again, it is very important to keep us updated and posted along the entire process of the evaluation. The school is constantly looking for good communication, with quick updates and answers to their questions, therefore, we will only be able to work with therapists who comply with these requests.

    • Just a reminder - many schools, teachers and therapists may do things differently in different schools districts. Please make sure to follow these procedures. Thank you.

  11. Weekend & Late Evening Calls:
    We'd like to make a quick mention about weekend and late evening phone calls to parents and families in reference to scheduling therapy sessions. Unfortunately we've run into a couple families that do not want to be contacted on the weekends or late in the evening.

    So although most of you probably already follow this guideline, in the future, just to be safe, please hold off on calling a new family after 5pm on Saturday's and no calls on Sunday's, unless you already have a relationship with the family. Also, please do not call the families after 9PM during the week, unless you already have a relationship with the family and they've OK'd late calls.

  12. Email Labeling and Subject Lines:
    If you have an issue or question with more than one child in your caseload, please whenever possible, detail the issues you are having with each child in separate emails.

    Also, the subject should read, "Re: first initial - last name" (i.e. "Re: M. Jones"), as this is how the school communicates when talking about the children amongst themselves. If we all use the same lingo/format it helps to streamline things for everybody, as emails get forwarded, (the chain/trial of communication can also be tracked later if need be, and sometimes subjects of just "IEP" or "Question" get "lost").

  13. Canceled Therapy Sessions and 'No-Shows':
    When a family cancels therapy while the therapist is en route, or there is a 'no show', therapists will be able to bill for 20 minutes of time (plus mileage) as long as the therapist notifies us, right away. To reduce the possibility of canceled sessions or 'no-shows', please check-in with the family the day of therapy to remind them of the therapy session.

    Additional Canceled Therapy Session and 'No-Show' Questions:

    • Question - Where and how do I document that? Do I try to make up the time?

    • Answer - If a student cancels therapy within a reasonable time, you can just reschedule (as long as the make-up falls within that month). If the month passes, they will need to forfeit that time. The only way make-up time can be extended into the following month is if you (the therapist) cancels therapy and we give you approval from the school to make up the time. To document a 'no-show', just bill for 20 minutes on the time sheet and list 'no-show' under the notes on that line of the time sheet.

  14. Changing Goals/Objectives & Time Frame Recommendations (IEP):

    • Question - I feel that the goals, objectives and/or time frame recommendations for my student need to be changed/altered on their IEP. How are goals/objectives and time frame recommendations amended or a re-eval scheduled?

    • Answer - If you feel that your student needs more time or new goals/objectives, then you would write up a paragraph with clinical findings and justification for more time and reasons for the changes in goals/objectives. We will take your request and submit it to the Related Services Coordinator (they will pass it on to the IS, who then holds an amendment meeting, which includes the parents, to discuss if any changes need to be made). Once changes, if any, are made, we will notify you to let you know about the amendment to the new IEP and you can begin to work off of that. It's important that you stick to the current IEP goals/objectives and minutes, until the IEP has been 'officially' amended by the school and the update is sent to us with approval to start the new, amended goals/objectives and time frames.

      If you feel that a standardized test is needed to ascertain this, then you could request this and the team will meet and if they agree, they will obtain consent for formalized/standardized testing.

  15. Initial Planning & Scheduling (Indirect Time):

    • Question – Is initial planning and scheduling (indirect time) billable?

    • Answer - When you first see a child, you can bill for 15 to 30 min of indirect time, (depending on actual time used etc.) for the time you spend in the beginning of the process talking to mom and familiarizing yourself with the child's "case" and background etc.

      There is also some time built in for issues such as IEP update and dealing with "problems" etc. that you have to talk about with someone at school, (also they pay 15 minutes for the quarterly progress note), but what they do not pay for is "planning" for each session going forward, and the few minutes each week you take to update mom with progress or to send each email about schedule changes (some folks would like it to be like in a law firm and round up to 15 minutes time for each 2 line email sent, and we just can't do that.

      With that being said they don't expect you to spend a lot of your time for "no reimbursement" and feel free to bring to our attention any situation that is requiring extra time, (such as a parent that hasn't responded to multiple attempts to communicate that you have had to forward to us, and then put a summary of all attempts on a communication log and send over for us to send to the school).