Sunday, February 22, 2015

In Times of Need, Remember Your Training...

As a school counseling coordinator, I subscribe to a lot of SC communication forums. I may not comment that much, but I am always assessing what I read and see. Which brings me to my first point. 

I know that it can be difficult being new, being then only counselor, being the only counselor who wants to abide by the ASCA model, etc. I get it. I understand it. I mentor and provide supervision for school counselors all the time. What I do notice however, is that an overwhelming amount of the comments or posts on these forums could easily be resolved by collaborating and consulting with other counselors in your department, with your district supervisor or your school nurse, social worker or psychologist in your building....when I say this, I mean the suicidal ideations, the self injuring behaviors, the pregnancies, the sexual explorations and relations and dealing with the rights of LGBTQ students. What are your school division's best practices? It's fine to solicit advice and assistance from the thousands of school counselors in the general viewing area about programming, resources and tools, but one must not forget that every one's school board policy is not the same (my second point). You must remember to filter the information you receive and utilize what is applicable to your rules and regulations that you work with.

My second point. As a practicing school counselor it is IMPERATIVE that you learn how to access your school board policy and practice interpreting it. Review ambiguous policy with your district supervisor, department chair or building administrator. Policy is the reason why things happen the way the do in school divisions. My policy maybe different from your policy and for me to give you advice based on my policy can have a negative impact on your career. That's why it is so important to collaborate and consult (those concepts of the ASCA Model we learned in graduate school) with those in your district first and then all others, second. 

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