Role of a School Counselor
What does a school counselor do?
Lots of things! Here are just a few:
Individual Counseling - Sometimes, students go through difficult times academically, socially, or personally. I am available for individual counseling sessions with students to support them through difficult times. If, as a result of working with a child, I believe a referral for further counseling is warranted, I will discuss this with the student and his/her parents.
Group Counseling - Each year I run a variety of counseling groups for students. Group topics each year depend on needs and interests of students and recommendations from teaching staff or parents. Group topics range in variety, from topics like living with divorce, handling stress, experiencing grief to skill building (social skills, leadership skills, etc.). Parent permission for group participation is required.
Classroom Counseling - Each year I go into the classroom to teach various lessons.
- Grade 6: Bullying and Cliques, introduction to our new Upstanders Group
- Grade 7: Red Flags: Depression and other mood disorders*
- Grade 8: Topics determined as relative to particular class
* In Grade 7 I go into science classes when genetics are being discussed to teach a depression and other mood disorder program called Red Flags. Jones has been recognized on a state-level for our participation in the Red Flags Program. More information about this program can be found at www.redflags.org.
Other classroom lessons and visits can occur as needed throughout the middle school experience.
Parent Support - Supporting parents as they navigate the middle years with their children is a big part of my daily work. As the advocate who follows the entire Class of 2019 throughout their three years of middle school, I get to know students and their parents well. I am typically your first phone call or email when you have a question or concern that goes beyond a typical communication with a classroom teacher. I schedule and attend all conferences with the teaching teams.
Teacher Support - The teaching teams have a team planning period every day, and I meet with all three teams as frequently as I can throughout the week. This allows us to quickly identify any concerns we may have with an individual or a group of students. It also helps us identify all the good things that are happening on a daily basis! When teachers observe a particular concern with a student, they typically go to the grade-level counselor to discuss the concern whether it is academic or social. Together, we determine the best approach to support the student through whatever difficulty we may notice.