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Director - Malathi Ferdinando

“My diverse qualifications uniquely enable me to provide a comprehensive and integrated speech pathology service to schools.  Speech Pathology for Schools aims to not just provide a speech therapy service in a school but to integrate a data driven outcome within a school community. We work collaboratively with you to improve student outcomes.” Malathi Ferdinando

Mala is passionate about using evidence based research to support school aged students to improve their learning outcomes. Mala is a qualified teacher and has worked as a speech pathologist in an educational context for over 20 years. She is convinced that collaboration is the key to working with students and enjoys working with teachers, students and parents. She values sharing her passion with the dedicated team of Speech Pathologists at SPS. When not working Mala enjoys traveling, reading, baking and dancing. Recent travels include Croatia and Sri Lanka

Qualifications & Experience

  • Bachelor of Applied Science - Speech Pathology - La Trobe University

  • Graduate Diploma of Education - Christ College (now Australian Catholic University)

  • Bachelor of Arts - Monash University

  • Graduate Diploma in Health Research - La Trobe University

  • Post Graduate Certificate in Early Literacy Intervention - Melbourne University

  • 20 years of Speech Pathology service at Catholic Education Melbourne, where Mala was integral in establishing and developing the speech pathology service.

Our team

Speech Pathology for Schools employs experienced clinicians to ensure that maximum benefit is provided to schools. We believe that the quality of our team is important in implementing a quality service. All staff are supported to undertake the specifically designed school programs.

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Martina is passionate about inclusion and is dedicated to improving the lifelong outcomes of all students through improved language, literacy and social skills. She is an experienced Speech Pathologist with over 10 years experience working across the disability and education sectors, including special education. Martina loves to collaborate with, upskill and learn from educators and other professionals to help improve the academic and well-being outcomes of children. She values team work, integrity and honesty and brings these values to her work at SPS. In her spare time, Martina loves spending time with her family, going to the dog park with her German Shepherd, Coco, and binge watching Netflix..

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Abana is passionate about provision of evidence based literacy intervention particularly in the areas of; reading, spelling,narrative language and phonological awareness. She has many years of experience working with children and adolescents in a community setting and is trained in Hanen’s More Than Words and It takes Two to Talk programs. She values a multidisciplinary approach to intervention and believes that it takes a community to raise a child and that better and long lasting outcomes occur when everyone is actively involved. She is excited to be part of SPS which prides itself in the provision of evidence based practice and use of the Response to Intervention Approach when delivering services in schools. Abana also speaks Tswana and outside of work she enjoys reading, travelling, shopping, doing Zumba and playing soccer.

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Aleesha is a creative and passionate Speech Pathologist dedicated to supporting students’ academic progress and learning potential through evidence-based practices. Aleesha’s extensive skillset as a qualified primary school teacher and Early Childhood educator mean that she has a clear understanding of child development, student needs and how to flexibly integrate speech pathology and education. Aleesha strongly believes that ‘communication is key!’ and is viewed as a collaborator and a team player. This belief is inextricably linked with SPS views and Aleesha actively contributes her knowledge while learning from other team members. Outside of work, Aleesha is a bit of a 'foodie' who also enjoys music, and dancing, reading and visiting her family in Queensland and Sydney.

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Pamela is a certified practicing speech pathologist with over 19 years’ experience working with school-aged children in government and special schools in Australia. She implements the RTI model linked to the Victorian Curriculum in schools. She has a particular interest in language and literacy skills in primary and adolescence, transdisciplinary learning and coaching of teachers/speech pathologist/speech pathology students.  In 2014 she began the Whole Class Language Interest Group for speech pathologists and leading teachers/principals implementing tier one oral language programs.  She has presented at several conferences, provided presentations through SPA, spoke at the new Language and Literacy Conference in 2018 and was key note speaker at the Leader's in Literacy conference in Tasmania, 2019.  As part of her work with SPS, she has carried out research on the needs and priorities of teachers, leaders and speech pathologists regarding implementation of language and literacy supports.  Based on this research she is building an SPS resource to implement language and literacy support at the tier 1 level including hundreds of whole class session plans.

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Samantha is passionate about working with children of all ages and values working as part of a team to deliver evidence-based, child-centred practice. She enjoys collaborating with educational staff and parents, and believes this is crucial to the provision of effective and holistic services. Over the past 10 years, Samantha has worked in primary and secondary schools, private practice, Early Intervention Services, and Community Health Services. In joining SPS, Samantha is excited to be part of a team that is innovative and is changing the way Speech Pathology is delivered in schools. Outside of work, Samantha enjoys learning Spanish, travelling, rock-climbing, hiking, and playing various musical instruments.

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Violetta is passionate about helping children reach their potential and build strong communication skills for life. She has gained experience working with children and adolescents diagnosed with speech, language and literacy disorders in clinical and school settings. She has experience working with families from diverse backgrounds and has additional training in THRASS, Key Word Sign and Lidcombe Programme for Stuttering. When working in a team at SPS, Violetta brings knowledge about evidence-based practice and helps create a positive learning environment to help students reach the best outcomes. Violetta also speaks Russian and outside of work, she enjoys traveling and playing tennis.

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Evelyn is an enthusiastic therapist who is committed to supporting school-aged students in developing their communication and literacy skills. She has five years of experience working in both school and clinic settings and has a special interest in literacy. Evelyn loves planning fun and engaging therapy sessions for her students and enjoys working with schools and parents to improve student outcomes. She values SPS's commitment to providing schools and students with the highest standard of care and work. In her spare time, Evelyn enjoys doing aerial silks, baking and watching TV shows.

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April is a certified practicing Speech Pathologist and a Registered Occupational Therapist. April has practiced speech therapy in a number of settings to include: public schools, private schools, and university clinics in Australia and overseas. The majority of her experience has been in private practice where she has worked extensively with toddlers, preschoolers, and school-aged children. April has specialist knowledge in the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of a variety of communication disorders to include: receptive/expressive language disorders, articulation disorders, tongue thrust, stuttering, autism spectrum disorders, social skills, and other developmental delays. April uses individual and group-based approaches working closely with children, their families, and key stakeholders at school to facilitate effective communication skill outcomes. April enjoys watching international films, learning the cello, and practicing Karate.

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Kharlea is an engaging and dynamic speech pathologist who enjoys working alongside school-aged students to find their learning potential in the areas of language and literacy. She possesses valuable experience in providing clinical support across the lifespan to children and adults in various settings including within schools, clinics, homes and telehealth. Kharlea has a friendly, collaborative approach when working alongside students, families and teaching staff, where she particularly enjoys learning about people’s passions and interests to guide her therapy approach. She values the importance that SPS places in ensuring that they are providing a collaborative, tailored approach according to each school’s needs and interests. In her spare time, Kharlea enjoys exercising, eating out at restaurants, travelling, baking and binge-watching TV shows.

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Alisha is a Speech Pathology Assistant, currently in her final year of her Bachelor of Speech Pathology (Honours) degree at Australian Catholic University. She has a passion for supporting speech and language development, to enrich the lives of students and improve all aspects of their communication. Alisha values the collaborative nature of SPS, embedding tailored Speech Pathology practice within schools and engaging with students, parents and teachers. Alisha has previous experience working in early intervention, particularly in the area of language development for children with autism. At SPS, Alisha is committed to lifelong learning, to continue creating a fun and engaging environment for students. Outside of work, Alisha enjoys reading, going on daily coffee walks, dancing, and spending time with family and friends.  

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