Education is the pillar of democracy and public education is the great equalizer. No matter your background or your education, you can bridge the gap. As your child's counselor, I am committed to maximizing your child's potential and dedicated to assisting each child to be successful in this part of their life's journey.
To provide every student the encouragement, support, academic skills and interpersonal skills to reach their highest potential.
Counselor Role & Philosophy of Counseling
My approach to counseling is based on the premise that empathy, trust and collaboration between client(student) and counselor are a must for positive change to occur. I believe that we all need a purpose and to feel worthy and it is my goal to help your student with these things. We will work as a team, parents, students and counselor to help your child develop effective tools to help them both in and out of school.
During our sessions we will work together to find out which parts of life are a struggle and develop goals within these areas. I like to use a combination of theories based on the situation and client needs. One theory that is helpful in the school is Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy because it focuses on the behavior that needs to change rather than the person feeling judged. This theory is based on empathy, requires collaboration from student and is goal-oriented. This theory keeps the focus on change, results and the future, rather than the past.
The counselor should be available and trusted by all students to serve them most effectively. One of the ways for the students to begin to know the counselor is through guidance lessons provided to the classes (Erford, 2015). Guidance lessons are a way for the counselor to teach life skills to help the students develop into their best self. Some lessons that could help achieve this goal are teaching lessons on suicide prevention, study skills, alcohol and drug prevention, anti-bullying, goal setting, career development and personal safety (Erford, 2015). These lessons can be taught differently according to grade level and with the teacher’s supplementing the lessons intermittently (ASCA National Model A framework for school counseling, 2012). Not only are these lessons important to help develop lifelong learners but they also help develop a rapport between the students and the counselor, so the students feel comfortable to address the counselor in times of need.
Counseling is a very important role of the school counselor and is most effective if the students have an ongoing relationship with the school counselor (ASCA National Model A framework for school counseling, 2012). Group counseling is an effective way to impact several students at a time dealing with similar circumstances (ASCA National Model, 2012). Some topics that effect many students and therefore are important for groups are anxiety, divorce, death, social skill building, and self-care. These groups can also help these students to build relationships with others that are experiencing similar life situations and help build community (Erford, 2015). Teachers can play an important role in group counseling by referring students to the counselor who may not be as aware of the individual needs of each student. Through this group counseling or a teacher recommendation it is also important that the counselor be available to provide individual counseling (Reichenberg, 2014).
To include everyone in the community is important, but also takes planning, research and organization on the part of the counselor (ASCA National Model A framework for school counseling, 2012). Every culture, race and sex should feel a part in the community and the school. We can do this by planning school wide events that celebrate the different cultures and their contributions and provide role models with community members. This can provide students with a feeling of community and help them to feel that they can achieve higher and are an important part of society.
The safety of all students and the feeling of safety is an important role of the school counselor (Erford, 2015). We must teach the children about their safety and with that comes having respect and kindness for each other. Another way to improve safety is to have regular drills so when a real emergency occurs the students and teachers know what to do in the different emergency situations.