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Occupational Therapy

K-12 Occupational Therapy (OT)
Jason R. Moore, OTR/L

"Occupational therapists put the FUN in functional" 

What is a school-based occupational therapy practitioner?
School-based occupational therapy practitioners are occupational therapists (OTs) and occupational therapy assistants (OTAs) who use meaningful activities (occupations) to help children and youth participate in what they need and/or want to do in order to promote physical and mental health and overall well being. Occupational therapy addresses the physical, cognitive, psychosocial and sensory components of performance. In schools, occupational therapy practitioners focus on academics, play and leisure, social participation, self-care skills (also known as ADLs or Activities of Daily Living), and transition/ work skills. Occupational therapy’s expertise includes activity and environmental analysis and modification with a goal of reducing the barriers to participation (
The American Occupational Therapy Association [AOTA], 2017).

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy 
      Utica College
Master of Science in Education Concentration in Adapted Physical Education   
     SUNY Cortland
Bachelor of Science in Education Physical Education Major 
     SUNY Cortland

Work Experience:
I am proud to be McGraw Central School District’s full time occupational therapist. I began work in McGraw in the beginning of the 2019 school year. I previously worked in the district as a part-time occupational therapist through my position with Cortland Regional Medical Center (now Guthrie.)  In addition, I worked at Liberty POST in Syracuse, New York where I provided early intervention and preschool occupational therapy services in Cortland County including Cincinnatus, McGraw, Blodgett Mills, Cortland, and Homer. 

Prior to working as an occupational therapist, I worked in a variety of roles in Central New York. I began as a substitute teacher at my alma mater, Homer, and then as a teaching assistant (3 years) where I gained experience working with children with Autism, emotional disturbances, and other health impairments. In addition, I have coached junior varsity boys’ soccer at Whitney Point (1 season) and Cortland (3 seasons). I have been a summer school physical education teacher at Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES for consecutive summers. While I attended SUNY Cortland, I worked part time for three years in Rite Aid Pharmacy on Port Watson Street in Cortland.  I worked five summers at the Cortland Youth Bureau as a Park Leader at Dexter Park; two years as a floater between Dexter, Randall, Suggett, Beaudry Parks and at Yaman park for three years. Prior to college, I spent 6 months at Pudgie’s Pizza. However, my passion for working with children started in high school when I worked at Labrador Mountain as a snowboard instructor.

Tell us about your family:
My wife and I were happily married in 2015 after dating since 2006. We have five purebred Ragdoll cats (Abner, Archie, Tank, Duck, and Sophie) as well as a purebred English Golden Retriever named Mollie. 

What's an interesting fact about you? 
In 2011, Dr. Timothy Davis encouraged me to attend a game of Homer Little Leagues’ Challenger Baseball, a team that creates an inclusive environment for children with diverse needs, ages 4-18. I began as a volunteer before working my way up to assistant coach, then head coach, and now I am the director of the Challenger Division for the Homer Little League summer program. 

In recent seasons, we typically have 15 players in our 4-7 year old team with an additional 10 players on the 8 and older team. Players come from Whitney Point, McGraw, Dryden, Ithaca, Lansing, Cortland, and Homer. Every summer, our team has an unique opportunity to play at NBT Stadium with Syracuse Challenger teams. Then, in 2019, the Cortland Crush began hosting an annual Homer Challenger night.  

This is a great program to get children with disabilities involved in baseball and to make new friends. We also have volunteers (Baseball Buddies) who provide support during the games. New players and Baseball Buddies are always welcome to join! Contact me for more information!

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Melinda McCool, Superintendent
10 West Academy Street
McGraw, NY 13101
P: (607)836-3636