School-Based Occupational Therapist Salary (United States)

With more than half of School-Based Occupational Therapists in the United States reporting more than 10 years of experience in the field, the field is heavily weighted towards experienced professionals. Pay ranges from $43,278 to $98,261 per year and averages out to $60,092 annually. Geographic location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by years of experience. Around one third of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, more than half report medical coverage and about half claim dental coverage as well. Job satisfaction for School-Based Occupational Therapists is high. This report is based on responses to the PayScale salary survey.
School-Based Occupational Therapist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$40,789 - $72,495
(Median)
41K
48K
54K
63K
72K
MEDIAN: $54,024
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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School-Based Occupational Therapist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$26.56 - $61.87
(Median)
27
32
40
49
62
MEDIAN: $40
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$33K$66K$99K
Salary
$40,789 - $72,495  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,024  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$43,278 - $98,261  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 344
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$23$46$69
Hourly Rate
$26.56 - $61.87  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $67.17  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,024  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$43,278 - $98,261  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 174
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Job Description for School-Based Occupational Therapist

As the field of special education evolves, it is becoming better understood how to evaluate the skills of special needs students; as such, schools are increasingly taking steps to help special needs students with their unique learning challenges and in obtaining necessary skills. School-based occupational therapists focus on two primary areas: assisting special needs students get the most out of their education through various programs and preparing students to lead productive and independent lives by helping them learn vital personal and self-maintenance skills; when possible, these therapists also help students learn skills that will help them find a job after they complete their education. This position requires direct interaction with the students, as well as the development and implementation of educational plans with instructors, administrators, and parents.
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School-Based Occupational Therapist Tasks
  • Test and evaluate patients' physical and mental abilities and analyze medical data to determine rehabilitation goals for patient.
  • Help clients improve decision making, abstract reasoning, memory, sequencing, coordination and perceptual skills using computer programs.
  • Select and recommend activities that will help individuals learn work and life-management skills consistent with their needs and capabilities.
  • Consult with rehabilitation team to select activity programs and coordinate with other therapeutic activities.
  • Record prognosis, treatment, response and progress in patient's chart or computer database.

School-Based Occupational Therapist Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for School-Based Occupational Therapist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For School-Based Occupational Therapists, experience in the field does not tend to play a major role in salary decisions; in general, pay does not go up drastically with more experience, and earnings grow incrementally instead. Salary growth can be slow for School-Based Occupational Therapists who are just starting out. During their first decade on the job, pay typically only increases from $56K to $58K. Those who spend a decent amount of time in this profession—one to two decades—usually make about $63K. As School-Based Occupational Therapists reach two decades on the job, salary growth continues, albeit at a slower pace, with pay averaging $66K. The largest number of School-Based Occupational Therapists have one to 10 years of experience, followed by those with 10 to 20 years. Workers who have been working for more than 20 years are the least common.

Pay Difference By Location

Orlando
up arrow 15%
Boston
up arrow 4%
National Average
$60,000
Chicago
up arrow 4%
Atlanta
up arrow 7%
Buffalo
up arrow 14%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
With a pay rate for School-Based Occupational Therapists that is 15 percent greater than the national average, Orlando offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. School-Based Occupational Therapists will also find cushy salaries in Boston (+4 percent). With compensation 14 percent below the national average, Buffalo is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market. Atlanta and Chicago are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median—salaries hover around -7 percent and -4 percent, respectively.

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects School-Based Occupational Therapist Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 9%
Experienced
up arrow 5%
National Average
$60,000
Mid-Career
up arrow 3%
Entry-Level
up arrow 7%

Skills That Affect School-Based Occupational Therapist Salaries

Sensory Integration
up arrow 3%
Pediatrics
up arrow 1%
National Average
$60,000

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 98 votes.

Gender

Female
97%
female alumni
 
Male
3%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
21%
5-9 years
17%
10-19 years
36%
20 years or more
17%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 67% dental benefits Dental: 49%
vision benefits Vision: 35% employee benefits None: 32%
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