Role of the School Counselor
(content by: https://www.schoolcounselor.org/)
Parents, the press, administrators and the general public often wonder just what it is that school counselors do on a daily basis. Gone are the days of school counselors sitting in their office simply handing out college applications, making schedule changes for students who want to drop a class or waiting for a crisis to occur. Today's school counselors are vital members of the education team. They help all students in the areas of academic achievement, career and social/emotional development, ensuring today's students become the productive, well-adjusted adults of tomorrow.
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL COUNSELORS
The elementary years are a time when students begin to develop their academic self-concept and feelings of competence and confidence as learners. They are beginning to develop decision-making, communication, and life skills, as well as character values. It is also a time when students develop and acquire attitudes toward school, self, peers, social groups, and family. Elementary school counselors are educators uniquely trained in child development, learning strategies, self-management, and social skills, who understand and promote success for today’s diverse students. They implement a school counseling program to support students through this important developmental period. Elementary school counselors do not work in isolation; rather they are integral to the total educational program.
MIDDLE SCHOOL COUNSELORS
Middle school is an exciting yet challenging time for students, their parents and teachers. During this passage from childhood to adolescence, middle school students are characterized by a need to explore a variety of interests, connecting their learning in the classroom to its practical application in life and work; high levels of activity coupled with frequent fatigue due to rapid growth; a search for their own unique identity as they begin turning more frequently to peers rather than parents for ideas and affirmation; extreme sensitivity to the comments from others; and heavy reliance on friends to provide comfort, understanding and approval. Identifying students’ academic and social/emotional needs, as well as providing any necessary interventions, is essential in removing barriers to learning and helping students develop skills and behaviors critical for academic achievement. The knowledge, attitudes and skills students acquire during these years build the foundation for future success.
Middle school counselors are educators uniquely trained in child and adolescent development, learning strategies, self-management, and social skills. They implement a school counseling program to support students through this important developmental period. The school counseling program provides education, prevention, and intervention activities, which are integrated into all aspects of students’ lives. The program teaches students the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary for academic, career, and social/ emotional development.
KEARNEY HIGH COUNSELORS
High school students need advisement in making concrete and compounded decisions. They must navigate academic, peer and parental pressures as they face high-stakes testing, the challenges of college admissions, the scholarship and financial aid application process and entrance into a competitive job market.
Counseling Services include
- Instruction - teaching the school counseling curriculum to students.
- Advisement – assessing student abilities, interests, and achievements to help them make decisions about their future.
- Counseling – providing professional assistance and support to a student or small group of students during times of transition, heightened stress, critical change or other situations impeding student success. School counselors do not provide therapy or long-term counseling in schools; however, school counselors are prepared to recognize and respond to student mental health needs and to assist students and families seeking resources.
- Consultation – share strategies supporting student achievement with parents, teachers, other educators and community organizations
- Collaboration – work with other educators, parents, and the community to support student achievement
- Referrals – support for students and families to school or community resources for additional assistance and information.