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Speech-Language Pathology

“Communication is the essence of human life.” – Janice Light

What is Speech-Language Pathology?

Speech-Language Pathology, also known as Speech Therapy, is a therapy service focused on improving a child’s speech and their abilities to understand and express language (including nonverbal language). This therapy focuses on preventing, identifying, evaluating, and treating speech, language, voice, feeding, and swallowing disorders in toddlers, children, adolescents, and adults.

At LSCTS, the Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP) will complete an assessment which will uncover the individual needs of your child. An assessment may include an interview with you and your child, completion of both formal and informal tests and questionnaires. Depending on your child’s needs, an assessment may range from 30 minutes (to screen speech and language skills) to several hours (to complete a full language – learning assessment). 

The SLP will determine if therapy is necessary and create a support plan for the child. This plan will outline goals, frequency and duration of the therapy sessions. The family and the SLP will decide if the support plan will be carried out by the SLP or the Communicative Disorders Assistant (CDA). 

Current research supports the view that play based therapy for children under the age of 6 is the most beneficial. To target a child’s communication goals, the therapist will engage the child in play that targets functional use of language in the most natural way possible.  

As part of the treatment process, the SLP will provide strategies in the form of handouts and materials for the home environment.  These strategies would encourage the development of their specific communication goals.

What can Speech-Language Therapy Help With?

We assist children of all ages from toddlers to teens. Common communication challenges include:

  • Speech sounds—how we say sounds and put sounds together into words. Other words for these problems are articulation or phonological disorders, apraxia of speech, or dysarthria.
  • Language—how well we understand what we hear or read and how we use words to tell others what we are thinking. In adults this problem may be called aphasia.
  • Literacy—how well we read and write. People with speech and language disorders may also have trouble reading, spelling, and writing.
  • Social communication—how well we follow rules, like taking turns, how to talk to different people, or how close to stand to someone when talking. This is also called pragmatics.
  • Voice—how our voices sound. We may sound hoarse, lose our voices easily, talk too loudly or through our noses, or be unable to make sounds.
  • Fluency—also called stuttering, is how well speech flows. Someone who stutters may repeat sounds, like t-t-t-table, use “um” or “uh,” or pause a lot when talking. Many young children will go through a time when they stutter, but most outgrow it.
  • Cognitive-communication—how well our minds work. Problems may involve memory, attention, problem solving, organization, and other thinking skills.

Content courtesy of American Speech and Hearing Association (asha.org)

SLP or CDA – What is the Difference?

What is a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP)?

Speech Language Pathologists (SLP’s) in Ontario are licensed, registered professionals who are able to assess, diagnose and treat communication based disorders. In Ontario, this requires a Master’s level degree, as well as registration with the College of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology of Ontario (CASLPO). 

Communicative Disorders Assistant (CDA’s) are

CDA’s are trained to provide individualized treatment under the supervision of a licensed SLP.  CDA’s can provide individual or group therapy sessions for a variety of different communication needs in children and adults. CDA’s have a post-graduate diploma in Communicative Disorders.

Who is Speech-Language Therapy For

 Speech-Language Therapy is for children who have difficulties with their speech and language skills. These difficulties can be due to motor or cognitive delays. Our therapists can work with children from toddlers to 18 years of age. Speech Language Therapy is suitable for children that struggle with weak oral muscles, hoarseness of voice, articulation problems, stuttering, fluency problems, language processing, selective mutism, those who are non-verbal, problems with literacy and much more.

Fee Schedule for Speech-Language Therapy

Please review the fees for the selected services. Prices are subject to change. For the most up-to-date pricing information, visit the “How it Works” page or our online booking site.

Language Assessment (7-18 yrs) - includes report


Language Assessment (2-6 yrs) - includes report


Preschool Assessment (0-2 yrs) - includes report


Articulation Assessment - includes report


Treatment Sessions (SLP), 1 hour


Treatment Sessions (SLP), 45 minutes


Treatment Sessions (CDA), 1 hour


Treatment Sessions (CDA), 45 minutes


Goal Update Session (SLP Only) - includes Goal Sheet


It begins with a conversation. You may know what services you are looking for, or may want to talk that through with someone who can guide you. Coming into our clinic begins with a call to our Administration staff to schedule your first appointment with a therapist. This first appointment may be a consultation where we collect relevant history and the details related to your most pressing concerns. The first appointment may also involve an assessment, where we are using standardized testing to inform next steps and recommendations.

Support Plan Development

Following the consultation/assessment appointment, the therapist will use the information gathered, and with the caregiver’s input, build a mutually agreed upon support plan. This may include goals for individual therapy sessions, further additional assessments, and guiding recommendations.

Therapy Sessions

Therapy sessions include the therapist, the child and the caregiver. Caregivers are encouraged to join in their child’s therapy sessions to observe the progress their child has made, to understand the activities and the desired outcome, and to learn how what happens in the therapy session can translate to the home setting. These sessions are also important in building rapport between your child, yourself and the therapist, as this is how we get to know you better and shape our sessions to meet your child’s individual needs.

Review and Next Steps

Once several therapy sessions have taken place, and the child has met their goals as laid out in their support plan, your therapist will meet with you to discuss next steps. This time of reassessment is an opportunity to celebrate the gains that have happened through therapy and determine what next steps are recommended to take place. This may include adjusting the support plan and carrying on with therapy sessions, or perhaps referring to an additional discipline to assist in reaching some new objectives, or celebrating the end of therapy sessions and your child reaching their goals!

Our Process

Here at LSCTS, our process can be boiled down to four essential steps. Our process ensures that our team follows best practices for each child and their families, every single time. Although we follow a standard process, the help and care that your child receives will be as unique as they are.

Read our most Frequently Asked Questions 

Starting on your child’s therapy journey can be confusing at times. So we’ve put together some of the most frequently asked questions to help you easily navigate your journey here at LSCTS.

Why is my child not talking?

Did you know that 15% of all children are considered late talkers? A late talker has mastered 50 words or less by age 2 and cannot combine words together. I.e., more bubbles (will say “more” or “bubbles” but will not say them together). There is no single explanation for a child to be a late talker. Some late talkers can acquire language without therapy but it is recommended that all language delayed children receive speech therapy to help facilitate their language development.

How does playing in therapy help with my child’s language skills?

Although therapy may look like simply playing, it is the best and most common approach to stimulate your child’s language development. Firstly, it ensures that the child is excited to come back to therapy and participate with the therapist during the session. Secondly, speech therapists are adept at targeting set goals while the child plays, they are learning without even realizing it! Lastly, since play and language skills develop in tandem, we often play during speech therapy sessions to encourage language.

How much of my child’s speech should others be able to understand at this age?

Typically, a child should be 95-100% intelligible to unfamiliar people by age 4. For younger children, unfamiliar people should be able to understand approximately 25% of their speech by age 1, 50% of speech by age 2, and 75% of speech by age 3.

How long will my child need therapy? How many sessions will we do per week?

The number of sessions will depend on a variety of factors. For example, a child with an articulation disorder may require 10-15 sessions depending on the severity of the issue. The number of sessions and frequency of sessions will be recommended by the SLP following an assessment.

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Shannon McCabe

Therapist Assistant - TA


Shannon is a Therapy Assistant at LSCTS. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Community Health from Brock University and earned her OTA/PTA diploma at Georgian College.

Shannon’s experience includes working with children ages 4-18 years within a variety of therapy settings — including school based care, home based care, and care within the community. She has a strong passion for ensuring each child has access to the care needed where they feel their most comfortable.

Shannon’s goal is to provide children and their families with the care and support needed for them to learn, grow, and feel supported and empowered.

Catherine (Katie) Epkenhaus

Therapist Assistant


Katie is a Therapist Assistant at LSCTS. She is incredibly passionate about rehabilitation in paediatrics.

Katie is experienced in a multi-disciplinary approach with all ages as a Therapist Assistant in neuro - spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and post stroke. She is also a community advocate/support with Autistic children and their families.

Katie’s approach is about providing a family-centred therapeutic experience with empathy, strong communication, and parental support. She loves to be engaging in her therapy sessions, and uncovering the full potential in all her clients!

Hannah Davies

Occupational Therapist - Reg. OT (Ont.)


Hannah is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She completed her bachelor’s degree in Child, Youth, and Family Studies from the University of Guelph, and is certified as an Early Childhood Educator.

Hannah brings a varied range of experience to her practice, drawing from her community therapy work in Vancouver, BC and from roles outside of her OT career, such as ski instructor, camp counsellor, nanny, and Early Childhood Educator. Drawing from this wealth of experience, her approach to practice is deeply rooted in early intervention and family-centered care.

Hannah enjoys working to help children of all ages achieve their goals, from infancy to young adult-hood. She is excited to use her creativity to develop fun, engaging, and enriching intervention plans while working in partnership with children and families.

Kathleen (Katie) Shaughnessy

Social Worker - MSW, RSW


Katie is a Social Worker at LSCTS. Katie believes in the inherent strengths of each child and her approach to counselling is rooted in building upon these strengths, fostering resilience, and empowering children to navigate life's challenges.

Katie creates a safe and supportive space by encouraging open communication, allowing children to express themselves freely. She draws from her experiences working with children and families in areas of mental health, child welfare, and mentoring coordination.

Katie incorporates trauma-informed, strengths-based and child-focused approaches to promote positive change and growth. She is passionate about ensuring children feel heard and understood, and that their perspectives are integrated into the counselling process.

Kelly Pusateri

Therapist Assistant - TA

Kelly is a Therapist Assistant at LSCTS.

Kelly has a background in parent coaching, early intervention and paediatric therapies. She has a strong passion for helping children and families along their therapy journey.

Kelly strives to provide children and their families with the support needed for them to build confidence, learn and grow. The thing Kelly loves most about working with children is when she sees the smiles on their faces and their excitement when they achieve their goals.

Wendy Neely

Behavioural Coach & Group Facilitator


Wendy Neely is the Behavioural Coach and a Group Facilitator at LSCTS. She is a trained Social Service Worker with a Bachelors degree in Psychology.

Wendy has spent the last 25+ years working as a Behaviour Consultant within the framework of Applied Behaviour Analysis.

Wendy's extensive knowledge, insight and passion has led her to develop and facilitate a variety of programming for children and adolescents to focus on areas of behaviour that include happiness, anger, fear, assertiveness and more.

Kaitlyn (Kaitie) Shipley



Kaitlyn (Kaitie) joined LSCTS in October 2023.

Emily Cooper

Occupational Therapist - Reg. OT (Ont.)


Emily is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She completed her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Toronto.

Emily has experience providing client-centred services to children with varied abilities. She is passionate about using a strength-based approach to help children and their families work toward their meaningful goals.

Emily is interested in fine and gross motor development as well as addressing sensory and emotional regulation needs through collaboration with children, their families, and their interdisciplinary team

Vanessa Garnett

Speech-Language Pathologist – BA (Hons), M.Cl.Sc


Vanessa is a Speech-Language Assistant at LSCTS. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Cognitive Science of Language and minored in French.

Vanessa has over 10 years of experience working with children in various capacities. She is passionate about creating a fun and engaging learning environment, as she knows that this is how children learn best.

Vanessa strives to help all children reach their full potential through a strength-based approach that uses each child’s unique skills and interests to help them achieve their goals.

Madeleine Beam

Social Worker - MSW, RSW


Madeleine is a Social Worker at LSCTS. She utilizes non-judgmental and culturally sensitive principles by recognizing the unique experiences and identities of each child.

Madeleine ensures that all children feel heard, understood, and valued, creating an inclusive environment where everyone can thrive. Her experiences include working in child protection, mental health, and providing counselling support to women and children in crisis.

Madeleine draws from a strengths-based approach and a narrative therapy lens, believing that every child possesses unique qualities and capabilities, and celebrates each child’s strengths as well as their individuality.

Bronwyn Westlaken

Therapist Assistant - TA


Bronwyn is a Therapy Assistant at LSCTS.

Bronwyn has experience providing direct care to individuals of all age groups within the neurorehabilitation field of therapy.

Bronwyn enjoys helping children find ways to improve their daily lives and participate in the world around them as fully as they can.

Lindsey Johnson

Therapist Assistant - TA

Lindsey is a Therapist Assistant at LSCTS with a diploma from Georgian College.

Lindsey has worked in many sectors, including both paediatric and hospital rehabilitation settings. Lindsey has a strong commitment to providing family-centred care by involving family members and caregivers in the therapeutic process.  

Lindsey believes in fostering a supportive and empathetic environment where children feel heard, respected, and empowered to participate in their care.

Maureen Willis

Psychotherapist - BA, MA, RP

Maureen is a Psychotherapist at LSCTS. She has certification in the ASIST Suicide Prevention Training Program and Indigenous Cultural Competency Training.

Maureen is passionate about providing an empathetic, caring, empowering and non-judgmental space. Maureen offers a strengths-based and trauma-informed approach that is collaborative and supportive, helping clients navigate through challenges to build resiliency, change and personal growth.

Maureen uses therapeutic modalities such as CBT, DBT, Internal Family Systems theory as well as mindfulness-based approaches.

Kathryn Janyce (Jan) Addy

Speech-Language Pathologist - MLS, MSc, SLP (C) Reg

Jan is a Speech-Language Pathologist at LSCTS. Jan currently sees clients in one-on-one sessions as well as servicing the Federal Schools in the greater Parry Sound area.

Jan has over 25 years’ experience working with toddlers, preschool and school-age children who experience communication delays.

Jan’s areas of interest include Articulation, Language Processing, Pragmatics, Reading Difficulties, Stuttering and Voice Delays.

Cassidy Thornton

Therapist Assistant - TA

Cassidy is a Therapist Assistant at LSCTS.

Cassidy is an experienced Therapy Assistant supporting our Occupational Therapist, Physiotherapist and Speech-Language Pathologist in the Parry Sound area.

Cassidy loves working with children particularly, to help them gain confidence, and provide them with the skills and tools they need in order to achieve their goals and reach their optimal potential. Cassidy always brings enthusiasm and positivity to her sessions!

Glenda Newton

Therapist Assistant - TA

Glenda is a Therapist Assistant at LSCTS. From 2006 – 2020 she found a passion for helping children while working in a Children’s Treatment Centre.

Glenda helps children reach their goals that are set by a supervising Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist.

Glenda enjoys implementing activities that are goal-oriented, interesting, and beneficial. She is excited to be a part of our Parry Sound site and servicing the Federal Schools in the greater Parry Sound area.

Michelle Dermenjian

Psychologist - M.Ed., C. Psych.

Michelle has been providing psychological services for over 30 years.  She is registered with the College of Psychologists of Ontario in the areas of Clinical, Counselling, School and Organizational Psychology.  After graduating from the University of Western Ontario and the University of Alberta, she began work with Integrated Services for Northern Children in Kenora, travelling to rural and remote communities in northern Ontario, providing multi-disciplinary services for children and their families. She moved to Parry Sound, with her family, where she continued to provide diagnostic and therapy services to infants, children, adolescents, families and adults with Developmental Disabilities at Hands.  

As retired director of Children’s Services and Lead Agency of Child and Youth Mental Health, she had the privilege of working with individuals, agencies, associations, and government advisories to plan for improved services for children and youth across the province.  She considers it an honour to continue to work with clients and families now through private practice, providing professional, evidence-based services that are compassionate and safe.  

As part of her practice, she is partnering with Lyndsey Stevenato Children’s Therapy Services, providing in-person and video-supported psychological services to infants, toddlers, children, and their caregivers.

Jennifer McDonald

Social Worker - BSW, MSW, RSW

Jenn is a Social Worker at LSCTS. She believes in approaching the counselling relationship with gentleness, warmth and creativity. Jenn takes a strength-based, holistic approach to supporting those she works with and regards herself as an ally & helper in the therapy process.

Jenn has Indigenous (Mohawk) and settler Canadian background and has experience working with children, youth and families in various settings and has considerable experience working with Indigenous community directed organisations.

As a new mom, Jenn has a special interest in supporting children and youth and is passionate about creating a safe and meaningful space to foster wellness.

Mikylah Heathcote

Social Worker - BSW, MSW, RSW

Mikylah is a Social Worker at LSCTS. Mikylah possesses over 10 years of experience working with children, adolescents and their families.

Mikylah is trained to take a trauma-informed, human rights approach within her practice. She employs a mix of therapeutic approaches in an effort to create individualized support. She also has experience as a school social worker with a strong knowledge base for navigating the educational system.

Mikylah takes a strength-based, inclusive, and empathetic approach to addressing challenges. She is passionate about empowering parents/guardians and children/adolescents throughout their work with her and beyond!

Sarah Stec

Communicative Disorders Assistant - CDA

Sarah is a Communicative Disorders Assistant at LSCTS. She will be working under the supervision of the Speech Language Pathologist to provide treatment either in 1-on-1 or group settings.

Sarah is also a certified Child and Youth Counsellor, with a background in working with deaf, hard of hearing, and deafblind individuals. She also has experience working with Mental Health concerns, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, and Multiple Sclerosis.

Sarah has a special interest in motor speech disorders and is passionate about making a difference in others lives by helping them reach their goals.

Tiffannie Peterratnaraj

Communicative Disorders Assistant - CDA

Tiffannie is a Communicative Disorders Assistant at LSCTS. She is passionate about providing an avenue to communication in any form with the end goal of autonomy and self-sufficiency for her clients.

Tiffannie has previously worked as a CDA under a private SLP providing in person and online speech and language services to the paediatric population.

Tiffannie is interested in play-based learning and its role in childhood language development. She is also excited to learn more about providing accessibility in all areas of life.

Vanessa Garnett

Speech-Language Pathologist Candidate – BA (Hons), M.Cl.Sc (Candidate)

Vanessa will be join the LSCTS Speech team June 2023

Vanessa is a Speech-Language Pathologist Candidate at LSCTS. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Cognitive Science of Language and minored in French.

Vanessa has over 10 years of experience working with children in various capacities. She is passionate about creating a fun and engaging learning environment, as she knows that this is how children learn best.

Vanessa strives to help all children reach their full potential through a strength-based approach that uses each child’s unique skills and interests to help them achieve their goals.

Erin Gilchrist

Speech-Language Pathologist - MHSc, SLP-C. Reg. CASLPO

Erin is a Speech-Language Pathologist at LSCTS and a Professor with the Communicative Disorders Assistant Program at Georgian College. She is passionate about working with families and using client-centred care to create meaningful communication goals.

Erin teaches clinical skills to CDAs and has experience working with paediatric and school aged populations for speech, language and communication difficulties.

Erin’s areas of interest include: articulation, phonology, motor speech and language development.

Marissa Buckland

Therapist Assistant - BHSc., TA

Marissa is a Therapist Assistant at LSCTS with a bachelor’s degree in Rehabilitation Science and Bioarchaeology.

Mariss’s experience includes working in psychogeriatrics, traumatic brain injuries, and supervising OT assistants in training as they begin their careers.

Marissa enjoys being the bridge between parents and their children by offering a space for the children to learn and express themselves freely and providing parents the education and tools to support their children between sessions.

Lisa Ivany

Physiotherapist/Psychotherapist (Qualifying) - BScPT, PT, RP (Q)

Lisa is the Physiotherapist at LSCTS. She loves helping her clients and their families reach their goals.

Lisa has over 25 years working in various settings, including in a large children’s hospital, a children’s treatment centre, and within community-based programs, working with children from 4 days to 18 years old.

Lisa has a special interest in working with infants and new parents, as well as neurodivergent infants and children. She is also authorized to prescribe seating and mobility equipment through the Assistive Devices Program (ADP).

Samanta Rivas Argueta

Occupational Therapist - OT Reg. (Ont.)

Samanta Rivas Argueta is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She completed her Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology & Nutritional Sciences.

Samanta strives to provide client-centered therapy for children of all ages in fun and engaging ways.

Samanta is passionate to work together with children and their families towards their unique goals. She uses a strength-based approach to foster a positive learning environment.

Pooja Patel

Occupational Therapist - OT Reg. (Ont.)

Pooja Patel is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She has over 9 years of experience working within the pediatric population, namely child and adolescent mental health.

Pooja’s training includes Handwriting Without Tears, Astronaut Training (sound activated vestibular-visual sensory protocol), Interoception-Based supports, trauma-informed practice, mindfulness, meditation and more.

Pooja prioritizes healthy lifestyle balance strategies as a key approach to support clients in building skills and resiliency. She is passionate about parent wellness and utilizes a strength-based perspective to facilitate change and add more joy in life!

Justine Kitchen

Occupational Therapist, OT Reg. (Ont.) - Senior Therapist

Justine Kitchen is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She has over 10 years experience as an OT and has worked in the Paediatric field her entire career.

Justine’s practice has always focused on family-centered care. It’s her educated belief that you cannot treat just the child, but that progress involves active involvement from parents and/or other caregivers in that child’s life.

Justine enjoys helping parents/caregivers navigate the recognition of needs and creating a plan of action for therapy and care. She is interested in child/adolescent mental health and emotional regulation and how this can be intertwined with sensory issues and resulting behaviours.

Sally Jishi

Occupational Therapist - M. Sc (OT), OT Reg. (Ont.)

Sally is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Biology.

Sally has over 5 years of experience working with children of different ages, skills and abilities in many different areas of occupational therapy practice including fine motor skills, visual perceptual skills, play skills and school readiness.

Sally is passionate about working with children and their support systems to help them reach their potential and meet their goals.

Jessica Cronk

Occupational Therapist - OT Reg. (Ont.)

Jessica Cronk is an Occupational Therapist at LSCTS. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology.

Jessica is passionate about using play to help children use their strengths to develop skills in a fun and engaging way. She has experience with children with many different skill sets and abilities.

Jessica is interested in all areas of therapy, and in particular enjoys working on fine motor, gross motor, visual perceptual, and feeding skills.

Jennifer Atkinson

Occupational Therapist - OT Reg. (Ont.)
School services only

Jenn is an Occupational Therapist. She currently works for LSCTS by servicing private schools to help support kids to be the best students they can be.

Jenn has worked with a variety of aged kids in many different settings – including child care, overnight camps, and day camps and in pediatric private practice.

Jenn enjoys getting to know each child’s interests and strengths so she can use those in therapy to progress towards their goals. She particularly likes working on fine motor and self-regulation skills.

Mallory Donaldson

Communications/Human Resources

Mallory is the Communications and Human Resources Assistant at LSCTS.

Mallory has over 10 years of experience working in a variety of Office Administrative roles and loves to engage within a fun and collaborative work environment.

Mallory has an interest in engaging with people and enjoys being a part of the marketing and social media team of LSCTS. Mallory is a self-proclaimed nerd, and has been known to cosplay from time to time.

Becky Robinson

Client Care Lead

Becky is the Client Care Lead at LSCTS. She has been working with the clinic since July 2006, being the first point of contact for the families of LSCTS.

Becky has a genuine interest in all the children and families that walk through the doors of LSCTS, and has had the great pleasure of watching children grow up as they have visited the clinic throughout the years.

Becky is always quick to greet families with a warm and caring smile, and always ready to lend a listening ear. Outside of work, Becky enjoys spending time with her family and going for walks with them.

+49 856 9568 95


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Joanne van Rennes

Clinic Director - BScN, RN

Joanne is the Clinic Director for LSCTS. She is a Registered Nurse.

Joanne has over 25 years experience as a manager in a variety of Community Health settings, with a focus on family centered care and engagement.

Joanne has an interest in building strong teams and loves working in the richness of a multi-disciplinary environment. Outside of work Joanne loves hanging out with her family and her dogs.