Through the Multi-Tiered System of Supports, we provide more targeted and intensive help for students who need it -- both academically and social/emotionally.
We strive to support all students with universal programming.
When a student is struggling, our teachers, school counselors and psychologists give more targeted help.
If targeted support does not work or a student is in crisis our educators employ more intensive interventions.
Why Elementary School Counselors?
The elementary school years set the foundation for developing the knowledge, attitudes and skills necessary for children to become healthy, competent and confident learners. Elementary school counselors have an impact on these years by implementing a comprehensive school counseling program and collaborating with school staff, parents and the community to create a safe and respectful learning environment. By providing education, prevention, early identification and intervention, elementary school counselors help their students achieve academic success, develop an understanding of career opportunities and develop social/emotional skills in response to issues they face.
--American School Counselor Association (ASCA)
What Does a School Counselor Do?
- Classroom Life Skills Lessons: Each month, and by teacher request, I deliver classroom lessons on social and emotional topics, adapted from a variety of curricula. This is considered Tier 1 or the Universal layer of support in that all K-5 students receive the lessons. Counseling lessons support the other Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) programs already in place, such as Nurtured Heart and Well-Managed Schools.
- Small Group Counseling: Groups develop as the year proceeds and needs arise. I lead groups on such topics as Friendship and Social Skills, Managing Worries and other Big Feelings, and Transitioning Families. Groups are comprised of 3-5 students and usually last six to eight weeks. Groups are considered Tier 2 or the Targeted level of support in that they are for some students. Referrals come from teachers and parents.
- Individual Counseling: By teacher, parent or student self-referral, I work with students on anything impeding the learning process. Counseling is usually brief and is solution-focused. If a student is needing therapy, or more counseling services, I can provide families with resources in the community. This service is considered Tier 3 or the Intensive layer of support in that 1:1 counseling is for a select number of students during the school day.