Monday, December 17, 2012

How pure is pure?

On Friday, the halls and classrooms were filled with laughter, cupcakes, and crafts as the students got ready for their winter break. I was busy running from classroom to classroom visiting my friends (I call all students my friends, because let's be serious, they are!)  and wishing them a happy, healthy, winter break and new year. As I walked back in to the front office to check my email between parties, my principal pulled me into her office and away she clicked on her screen. CNN has posted in huge letters that over a dozen CHILDREN had been shot and killed...As tears filled all our eyes, and the panic filled my heart, you can't help but feel such deep sorrow for what our world has become.

It makes me wonder how such a pure, pure place could have such havoc and pain in a matter of minutes. Not one good thing has come of this massacre, but it is bringing attention to the importance of mental health in America. Just as we go to the medical doctor for a yearly check up, maybe we should think about getting emotional help when we need it to.

I pray for the future of this country, the future of mental health, and for these families as they mourn the loss of the most wonderful people on earth: children.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Advisory Council

This past week I held my first Advisory Council meeting. This is a fancy term for gathering teachers, parents, students, administrators, and community members together for a morning of breakfast and learning about the counseling program. This group will meet twice a year, once in December and once in June, to discuss the department and how it can grow and become a stronger program. The meeting started at 7:45am and was over by 8:25am. We got bagels and O.J. and spread the word.

Since this is the first year there has been a full-time counselor at our school, I have had the opportunity to lay the foundation for what our counseling department is going to look like. I presented information from the teacher survey, the student survey and what the district "said" a school counselor "should" be doing. I also created a rough draft for my mission statement and my vision for the department. I shared information about the American School Counselors Association (ASCA) model looks like and how I would like to model my counseling program like that.

This was a PHENOMENAL way to let every group I work with understand the tasks of a school counselor and get feedback from each group about how to improve.

I would definitely recommend doing this for your school to get the word out about school counseling at your school!