The Roles of a School Counselor Original Created by Dawne Gibson Revised and Adapted by Trish Curcuru
What does a school counselor do? Maybe you would like to be a school counselor. Or maybe you are just curious about the roles a counselor plays in your school. This slide show should give you a good understanding. Curcuru, T.
What are the many roles of a counselor? • Consultant • Teacher • Personal Counselor • Crisis Counselor • Peer Facilitator • Group Counselor • School Test Coordinator • Career Counselor • Chairperson for the Intervention & Referral Services Team – Grades 3-5 and Bilingual K-5 • Anti-Bullying Specialist • Advisor • Program Manager • Researcher • Public Relations Consultant • Heroes Mentorship Program Coordinator • Program Evaluator • Child Study Team Liaison • Lunchroom Supervisor & Parents’ Parking Lot Supervisor • School Safety Team Chairperson & PBIS Committee Member • 504/ADA Plan Coordinator/Writer Revised by T. Curcuru from D. Gibson’s original slide.
Consultant We serve as student advocates by consulting with students, parents, teachers, and others regarding strategies to help students and their families. Gibson, D.
Teacher We have a set curriculum, just as teachers do, that is mandated by the state. We teach from these standards to all classes during our Classroom Guided Instruction. Gibson, D.
Personal Counselor We serve as mentors, role models, and a confidante to students and faculty members who need someone to share their burdens with during various times of their lives. Gibson, D.
Crisis Counselor We serve students and the faculty with critical issues that may arise unexpectedly, such as a death, fire, tornado, etc…. http://www.fema.gov/kids/ The Center for the Prevention of School Violence Gibson, D.
Peer Facilitator Counselors can train students as peer mediators, conflict managers, tutors, and mentors. http://www.peerprograms.org/ Gibson, D.
Group Counselor A counselor will conduct group counseling as needed on such topics as anger management, bullying, friendship, feelings, etc. The counselor will only conduct group counseling with parental permission. School Violence Prevention & School Safety Guide Safe Communities ~ Safe Schools Bullying Prevention Gibson, D. Revised by T. Curcuru
School Test Coordinator • Counselors serve as school test coordinators for the Department of Education’s testing program for grades 3, 4, and 5. In this critical role, counselors ensure that all aspects of testing are smooth from the early stages of planning and staff training to the final stages of test administration and make-ups. Our involvement in this year-long process extends well beyond actual testing weeks. Counselors spend months preparing and learning about the needs of the students and staff. Counselors conscientiously study IEPs and 504 Plans to make certain testing accommodations are met. After the school year ends, often in July, counselors are still at work on testing during the records review process. All student information must be accurate as this impacts state and federal progress reports. • Once scores arrive in the fall, counselors also ensure individual score reports are disseminated, filed and forwarded. • As parents and staff receive reports, the counselor serves as a resource for interpretation of the data. • Curcuru, T.
Career Counselor • Counselors help students investigate the world of work as well as their personal interests, develop job skills, apply for jobs, write resumes, and seek employment. Gibson, D.
I&RST Chairperson • The school counselor serves as the chairperson for the I&RST for grades 3, 4, and 5 and for bilingual grades K-5. In this role, she meets twice a month with a team of professionals who develop plans for students in need of an educational plan that includes interventions and/or referrals. • The school counselor prepares the agenda for the meetings and maintains the end-of-the-year report. Curcuru, T.
Anti-Bullying Specialist • Counselors serve as the Anti-Bullying Specialist to prevent and assist with the investigation of alleged incidents of harassment, intimidation and bullying. In this role, counselors work closely with the administration and staff to prevent incidents and to create and implement action plans to remediate incidents once they occur . • Counselors receive training in HIB prevention every year and write reports which are submitted several times a year to the district Anti-Bullying Coordinator. Curcuru. T.
Advisor A counselor is an advisor to students as they enroll in school, prepare to leave school, and as they enter the work field. A counselor may also serve as an advisor to the community, seeking ways to better their school and generate support for their program. Gibson, D.
Program Manager A counselor must be organized and up-to date on the latest curriculum and standards given by the state and local systems in order to develop a well rounded program. Gibson, D.
Researcher Counselors must analyze their individual school’s data results from testing. We also must evaluate our program regularly and make necessary changes. We must research the latest data and update our resources periodically. Gibson, D.
Public Relations Consultant In this role, the counselor helps others in the school understand the counseling program. The counselor may promote the program through various activities such as the creation of a website, blog, or newsletter. She may also reach out to the community and its resources to benefit the school and/or students. Gibson, D. & Curcuru, T.
Heroes Mentorship Program Coordinator • The counselor seeks to pair staff mentors, “Big Heroes,” with students or “Little Heroes.” • The counselor oversees the program by organizing, mentoring and encouraging as well as celebrating the special bonds formed between the Heroes. Curcuru, T.
Program Evaluator • Counselors continually assess the needs of their students, evaluate their programs, and make changes in the school counseling program to better meet the current, identified needs of students. From Millville K-8 Guidance Curriculum, p. 4, January 2013.
Child Study Team Liaison • The counselor keeps in contact with Child Study members throughout the year and at I&RST meetings to discuss and review new referrals and the progress of current classified students. • The counselor meets with the Special Services social worker weekly to discuss the counseling needs of classified students.
Lunchroom/Drill/Parking Lot Supervisor • The counselor supervises the lunchroom during kindergarten/first grade lunch every day. • The counselor supervises the parents’ parking lot one week per month in the morning. • The counselor supervises drills as requested and needed by the principal and vice principal. Curcuru, T.
School Safety Team Member • Counselors serve on the School Safety Committee/and or serve as chairperson. • The counselor analyzes HIB data and trends and devises a plan with the team to reduce incidents and to take proactive measures. • The counselor works with the team to develop activities for Respect Week in October. • Counselors also serve as a member of the Positive Behavior Intervention and Support Team. We support PBIS team efforts and work with administration , staff, parents, and students to foster positive behavior. Curcuru, T. Curcuru, T.
ADA/504 Plan Writer Counselors receive 504 training from the Director of Special Services and must follow 504 Law to write plans for students who quality. Prior to writing plans, counselors present 504 requests to the I&RST; and if appropriate, schedule 504 eligibility determination meetings, and organize paperwork/records. Counselors carefully assemble a multi-disciplinary 504 Committee that includes the student’s teacher, parents, administration, and other individuals who can provide expertise and have enough knowledge and information to make a determination of eligibility or non-eligibility. Once a plan is in place, counselors and social workers make certain that all teachers are aware of the 504 Plan and follow the accommodations. Curcuru, T.
Now that you know what your counselor does….. What is important to your counselor? Rieck’s counselor, Mrs. Curcuru, believes in being student centered and solution focused. Students are central to her work and she likes to help them to find solutions to their problems. This gives Mrs. Curcuru much joy! Mrs. Curcuru likes working with people and she has lots of experience helping others. Curcuru, T.
What else do you need to know?School Counselors provide short–term (brief) counseling in the school. School counselors do not provide therapy for children or families.Curcuru, T.
What is the difference between counseling and therapy? Counseling: • Addresses preventative and developmental concerns. • Addresses conscious concerns related to school. • Assists with educational, career, and decision-making problems. • Uses teaching methods. • Makes referrals to parents for students with serious problems to receive help from professionals with clinical training. Credit: The School Counselor’s Book of Lists by Dorothy J. Blum. P. 47
What is therapy? • Addresses serious disorders and personality problems. • Addresses unconscious concerns as well as conscious concerns. • Assists with personality reconstruction and other serious problems. • Uses healing methods. • Provides ongoing therapy to students referred by school counselor to parents. Credit: The School Counselor’s Book of Lists by Dorothy J. Blum. P. 47
What is the counseling method provided by your school counselor? Your school counselor provides solution-focused brief counseling. Method: • Listen attentively to the students’ description of the problem. • Refocus toward solution of the problem and reframe with success terminology. • Externalize the problem. • Align with the student against the problem. • Focus on the visible and the specific. • Ask the student the “miracle question”: If the problem were solved overnight, how would the student know it was solved?” “What would be different?” • Identify problem maintenance behaviors. Credit: The School Counselor’s Book of Lists by Dorothy J. Blum. p. 46
Solution-Focused Brief Counseling (cont.) • Identify exceptions, times when the student has the problem under control. • Encourage student to do the same thing(s) as he or she did during exceptions. • Encourage adults in the school to see the student as competent and able to control the problem. • Use a scale of 10 and ask the student to place control of the problem on that scale. • Caution students to go slowly and focus on tasks that lead to success. • Notice time and place when examining successes. • Recognize student as expert and totally responsible for success. Credit: The School Counselor’s Book of Lists by Dorothy J. Blum. p. 46
What does confidentiality mean to your counselor? Counselor MUST keep students’ personal information and issues PERSONAL. We are NOT allowed to share this information unless one of the following guidelines occur: Gibson, D.
Reasons for breaking confidentiality… • They are in danger or they present a danger to someone or themselves. • You are mandated by the courts. • They give you permission to discuss it with someone else. • They are in violation of a school policy that requires you to report it to a school administrator. • You feel it necessary to consult with someone more experienced in the area of concern or need (with student’s permission). Gibson, D.
Credits and Acknowledgements • A very special thanks to super guidance counselor Dawne Gibson of Englewood Elementary School in Tuscaloosa, Alabama for sharing her original PowerPoint creation of “The Roles of a Counselor.” Reaching across many miles to share ideas has been a joy! • With Dawn’s permission and kindness, Trish Curcuru, Rieck Avenue School’s guidance counselor, was able to revise the PowerPoint and to add and tailor slides as needed. Trish is very grateful to Dawn for her inspiration and collaboration!
Thanks you for taking the time to understand the roles and responsibilities of a counselor. Curcuru, T.