Nancy Byrd will be retiring from the Guilford County Schools (GCS) Occupational Therapy department on September 30th. She has been with GCS for 15 years – and has had an OT career spanning 41 years! Nancy has worked in adult and pediatric in-patient acute and rehabilitation settings as well as out-patient, home care, and hand therapy, in addition to school-based practice. After gaining extensive medical and trauma experience in large city hospitals in Texas, she contracted with two counties in Texas to provide school-based services where there was no other OT or PT serving in those counties. Upon moving to North Carolina, Nancy continued to provide adult and pediatric clinical and home care services as well as hand therapy and school-based services. Within her time with GCS, Nancy’s primary caseload has been in serving students on the Autism Spectrum with intense behavioral needs.
Nancy’s OT philosophy has always been to have a holistic view of the patient, client, or student. She feels that it is imperative that the OT look at all factors affecting the student’s functional outcome and potential for progress on their IEP goals. This includes gaining knowledge from other disciplines and their assessments of the student as well as collaboration with all members of the IEP Team in order to provide integrated OT services that support classroom goals. She is adamant that OTs cannot focus on just one issue, such as sensory issues, but must consider cognitive, developmental, medical, and mental/emotional issues as well! Nancy is an intense advocate of the NCDPI Guidelines for OT in the Public Schools/school-based integrated OT model as it is evidence-based and provides the best opportunity for interaction in the classroom and optimum student success.
Nancy, we will miss you here in Guilford County but know you will thoroughly enjoy your well-earned retirement!