RELATED SERVICES INFO: Guidance from ADHS, Office of Special Licensing re: SLPs, SLTs, SLPLs, and SLPAs

Published: May 20th, 2020

Special Education Directors,

Based on questions received during Special Education Director Check-Ins and through the ESS Inbox, it appears that there is some confusion about the credentialing requirements for speech-language pathologists (SLPs), including out-of-state telehealth providers, speech-language technicians (SLTs), and speech-language pathologists-limited (SLPLs). Also, ADE/ESS has learned there may be some questions regarding the job duties of a speech-language pathology assistant (SLPA). The following information has been provided to ADE/ESS by the Arizona Department of Health Services, Office of Special Licensing.

“To work in a public school setting, SLPs, including out-of-state telehealth providers, SLTs and SLPLs must hold both a current license from the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) and a current non-teaching professional certificate from the Arizona Department of Education (ADE). SLPAs only need ADHS licensure as ADE does not issue certificates to SLPAs. Individual practitioners must check with the credentialing agencies of the state where they reside to determine if they must also be licensed/certified in that state in order to (tele)practice in another state.

SLPAs must be supervised by a master’s level licensed and certified SLP , SLPL, or a SLT with a SLPL certification. Please see A.R.S. § 36-1940.04(E) through (G) for more information. Please see A.R.S. § 36-1940.04(E) through (G) for more information.

Public education agencies (PEAs) are responsible for verifying that speech personnel working with their students hold the appropriate credentials. The potential repercussions of providing speech-language services without the appropriate credentials are serious for both the individual and the public education agency (PEA), regardless of whether the individual is employed directly by the PEA or contracted through a third party.

Speech personnel should provide a copy of the required credentials prior to employment. You may confirm the AZDHS license by entering the holder’s name in the ADHS Care Check Portal. District and charter school HR administrators may confirm the ADE certificate through the Educator Certificate Search Portal.

For additional information about the provision of speech services in the schools, please refer to ADE/ESS’ Arizona Technical Assistance System (AZ-TAS) document, “Speech-Language Services in Arizona’s Schools: Guidelines for Best Practice” on the ADE website. Please forward this information to any interested parties, including your PEA’s HR office.”

If you have questions about ADE certification of speech personnel, please contact ADE certification specialists. If you have questions about the licensure of speech personnel, contact AZDHS, Office of Special Licensing. Thank you.