The role of the school counselor is vital to the success of a school community. It is a role that must change with the ever-changing needs of the student population. For this reason, it is not uncommon to find that the role of the counselor may differ from school to school, district to district, and state to state. Despite this fact, there are a few key ingredients to a successful comprehensive school counseling program. These ingredients include individual counseling, small group counseling, large group counseling, and consultation. With this framework as a guide, counselors then assess and reassess their school environments to determine in what proportions these services are needed. Counselors also bring their own theoretical framework with them from their education and training which influences the way in which these services are presented. All of these factors combine to provide a broad range of possibilities in the counseling field. The biggest advantage of this broad range is that each counselor has the flexibility to tailor his/her program to best meet the needs of each individual student within his/her community. For this reason it is important to maintain good communication between the counseling department and the parents, faculty, students, and community to ensure a comprehensive, effective school counseling program.
All School Counselor:
Mary Giuliani, M.A. LCPC
Ann Neill, M.S.W.
Middle School Counselor:
Eileen Knobloch, M.Ed.
High School & College Counselors:
Jeffrey Neill, M.A.
Katelyn Kearney, M.A.
Elementary School Counseling
Elementary School Counseling is offered on an individual basis, to small or large groups, and by consultation. Individual counseling sessions provide an opportunity for a school counselor to spend time with students one-on-one. Students may be referred to the counselor by concerned parents, teachers, administrators, the counselor’s own observations or by the students themselves.
Small group counseling sessions are created to address specific topics that concern multiple students. Groups are organized based on developmental levels and will often contain members who are all in the same grade in school. Groups typically include 4-8 students depending on the age and meet weekly for 30-45 minute sessions. Large group counseling sessions or Social & Emotional lessons are conducted in the classroom with all students in the school. Depending on the grade level and schedule of the class, each group may meet with the counselor as often as once per week or maybe only once per month or more. These lessons address topics that are relevant to the growth and development of all students in the school.
Consultation is a vital component of the role of the school counselor. The counselor works on a regular basis with teachers, parents, and administrators to properly serve each student. Counselors also work with special educators and resource teachers, social workers, school psychologists, and local community resources to provide any additional services a student may require. This approach allows the counselor to function as one member of a team which is a far more effective strategy than operating in isolation.