Rina Barak proudly practices as a speech-language pathologist for Speech Language and Educational Associates. After working in primarily school settings and on multi-disciplinary teams throughout her career, she is excited to begin her new role as Clinical Lead of all of our school therapists. Rina received her Masters of Arts in Communication Disorders from Montclair State University in Montclair, New Jersey. She chose the field of Speech Language Pathology knowing that her passion for working with children of all ages and love for teaching would be a perfect fit with the profession. Since the start of her career with SLEA, Rina has worked in a wide variety of school settings, ranging from severe physical and cognitive impairments, to working with preschoolers placed in a special day class, to school-age children placed in the general education setting with articulation difficulties, Autism, Apraxia, stuttering, expressive and receptive language difficulties, and other health impairments. In every school, Rina has creatively found ways to get around the typical “pull-out” method of therapy. She believes strongly that children can only truly reach their full potential when parents, teachers, and the entire education team is working together to figure out what that child needs to reach academic success.
Rina has participated in parent trainings, trainings for teachers on how to incorporate speech and language in the classroom, and has worked together with resource specialist teachers to figure out what learning style works best for a student. Rina has participated in “co-teaching”, “consultation models,” and “push-in” to the classroom models of therapy for preschool, elementary, and middle school students. She has implemented speech improvement classes to help students with mild articulation impairments consisting of one or two sound errors, who do not qualify for speech therapy in the school setting. Her “do whatever it takes” method of therapy has allowed her students to not just meet the goals of therapy, but to generalize the skills they have learned across all settings.
Rina has two kids of her own, Abby (age 3) and Isaiah (age 1), who have helped her realize the importance of knowing what is typical, before you can help a child with special needs. Rina has supervised speech-language pathology students, SLPAs, SLPA interns, and clinical fellows. She truly believes that supervision provides an opportunity for mutual clinical growth. She treasures her role at SLEA as she has been provided with the opportunity to work in a variety of school settings and can provide therapy in a way that best meets the needs of each child.