Our Children's Best Advocate
Dr. Kirsten Siggs wears many hats as she assesses children’s therapy needs, develops individualized education plans (IEP), coaches therapy and educational staff and counsels parents and families.
Her roles include physical therapist, assessment specialist, counselor and diplomat as lead physical therapy diagnostician at UCP of Central Florida.
“I love the variety and challenge,” said Siggs, who is married and the mother of two daughters, Lyla, 4, and Addyson, 2. “I get to play with kids all day.”
But it’s much more than play time.
Siggs’ job is serious business as she supports and mentors therapists who work with children with a range of special needs and delays receiving educationally relevant physical therapy services at UCP’s campuses. She also works closely with classroom staff to support positioning and mobility needs of students so they can access their environment.
“I’m an advocate for children ensuring we do our best to give each child the highest-quality therapy to succeed,” said Siggs, who is a big proponent of the push-in model used at UCP’s seven Charter Schools.
Therapists provide therapy in the classroom so they can collaborate with teachers and watch students as they interact with their peers. For example, they may work with a child who is in a wheelchair to strengthen their balance and posture so they can join their classmates sitting on the floor at circle time.
Siggs attended the University of Florida, receiving her Bachelors in Science in applied physiology and kinesiology with a specialization in exercise physiology in 2008. Three years later, she earned her Doctorate in Physical Therapy at UF. She spent the first three years of her career practicing in an outpatient setting, treating adolescents and adults with a wide range of surgical and non-surgical orthopedic impairments. From there, Siggs gained experience in the home health setting focusing on the geriatric population.
Looking to further expand and challenge her knowledge, Siggs joined the UCP of Central team in October 2017.
“Kids and geriatrics have a lot in common,” Siggs said. “UCP offers a unique setting where therapists can make a big difference in kids’ lives.”