The Professional School Counselor 

FAQ's (Frequently Asked Questions) for the School Counselor:

1.  What is a School Counseling Program (SCP)?
A school counseling program is comprehensive in scope, preventative in design, and developmental in nature.  School counseling programs are designed to ensure that every student receives the program benefits.  Historically, many school counselors spent much of their time responding to the needs of a small percentage of their students, typically the high achieving or high risk.  The ASCA National Model:  A Framework for School Counseling Programs, recommends the majority of the school counselors time be spent in direct service to all students so that every student receives maximum benefits from the program.  (Hatch & Bowers, 2005). 

2.  What is the role of the School Counselor?

3.  What is the best way to contact the school counselor? 
Parents:  If the school counselor is not available when you call or come in, the best way to contact the school counselor is via email or by leaving a detailed voicemail message.  Please include all pertinent information so that when we get back to you we can assist you better.  Feel free to make an appointment to see your child's counselor at any time. 
Students:  You may come see your school counselor in room 424.  Please make sure that you have a pass from your teacher so that you are not marked absent or cutting. 

4.  How can my child access your services?
As a parent, you can refer your child to see the school counselor.  Feel free to contact your child’s school counselor to discuss what services you are looking for.

5.  If I feel the need for outside counseling, how can I get a referral?
Please inform a staff member of the school counseling program of your interest to seek outside services.  Let us know your health insurance coverage and the services you are looking for.  We can help you to find a place that will accommodate your needs.  Feel free to look at links on our webpage under mental health centers.

6.  How can I keep up with my child’s progress in school?
This begins with checking your child’s agenda and notebooks everyday.  You should also have contact with each of your child’s teachers regularly, as they see your child on a daily basis.  Look out for letters with dates of when progress reports are sent home, parent-teacher conferences, etc.  Feel free to visit the ARIS Parent Link where you can find information about your child that only you have access to, using a secure login procedure.  When you open this link, you will learn how to obtain a student ID and password for your child.    

7.  What is confidentiality?
Confidentiality is what you say here, stays here… (With at least four exceptions).
    • Client discloses a danger to self or others,
    • Consultation/Supervision,
    • Signed releases of information,
    • Court subpoenas (can be challenged in court),
    • Additional issues for minors (re: parents/guardians).
      (Chen-Hayes, 2010)

8.  What is FERPA?
FERPA stands for Family Educational Rights Privacy Act.  This law allows any parent or guardian access to all of a students educational records and any emancipated minor may have access as well.  (Chen-Hayes, 2010)

9.  What is TACKLE?
The acronym TACKLE was created by Stuart Chen-Hayes (Professor at Lehman College) to succinctly describe the specific skills that NCTSC-companion institution programs seek to develop in their school counseling candidates.  Tackle stands for: 
Teaming and collaboration with all stakeholders to close achievement and opportunity    gaps and ensure career/college readiness and access for every student.
Advocacy for every student to close gaps and promote career/college readiness and access.
Culturally competent counseling and school counseling program coordination to close gaps and promote career/college readiness and access skills.
Knowledge and use of technology to close gaps and promote career/college readiness.
Leadership to close gaps by challenging school policies and procedures and ensuring all  students receive ASCA-standards based school counseling program lessons (access) and educational planning (access plans) annually to close gaps.
Equity assessment using data—using school report cards, comprehensive educational plans and other information to create evidence-based gap-closing interventions and career/college readiness interventions with demonstrable results.  

(Chen-Hayes, 2010)

10.  What is ACCESS?
ACCESS is the acronym for the skills that all k-12 students need to be able to learn and demonstrate from a transformed k-12 school counseling program. Chen-Hayes coined the acronym ACCESS to give an easy way to remember the core ASCA Standards, Competencies, and Indicators   with additional emphasis on college readiness and multicultural development skills for every K-12 student to receive from developmental lessons, activities, planning, and counseling interventions to develop competencies delivered from a school counseling program. 
ACCESS:  Key domains of K-12 student competencies delivered in data-driven comprehensive school counseling programs

Academic development
Career development
and post-secondary education development
motional/personal development
ocial/cultural development

(Chen-Hayes, 2010)

School Counseling Program Mission Statement:
The mission of CASA Middle School's Counseling Program is to provide comprehensive, college access/college readiness, developmental counseling that addresses the personal/social, academic, and career development of all students.  School counselors are professional school advocates who provide support to maximize student potential and academic achievement.

School Counseling Program Beliefs/Philosophy Statement:
The school counselors at CASA Middle School 462x believe that all students should have access to a comprehensive school counseling program.  We believe that schools that have an effective school counseling program, students are more likely to graduate from high school, go on to college, and be successful members of society.  Our program offers every k-12 student the competencies that are aligned with academic, college/career, and personal/social readiness and development.  Through data driven practices, hands-on activites and enrichment, we will work to close the achievement and opportunity gaps that are holding our students back from reaching their highest potential. 

The school counseling program should: 
~ Reach every student.
~ Be comprehensive in scope, preventative in design, and developmental in nature.
~ Select measurable student competencies based on local need in areas of academic, career, and personal/social domains.
~ Have a delivery system that includes school guidance curriculum, individual planning, responsive services, and system support.
~ Measure both process and outcome results and analyzes critical data elements.
~ Seeks improvment each year based on results data.
~ Is implemented by a credentialed school counselor.

(ASCA National Model, 2005)

School Counseling Program Brochure:
Use can use the file below to access the the school counseling program brochure.  We want you to know all about school counselors and school counseling programs!

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Page created by Lisa Silverman, School Counseling Intern/Graduate student of the Counselor Education program at Lehman College