Indicator 4

School counseling services have an adequate number of certified/licensed personnel and support staff (see Guideline on Counselor/Counselee Caseload) who:

What to Look for:

  • deliver a written, developmental program
    • the guidance curriculum supports the school’s core values, beliefs, and expectations about learning
  • meet regularly with students to provide personal, academic, career, and college counseling
    • all students have access to comprehensive counseling services which include personal, academic, career, and college counseling
    • all guidance counselors meet at least once a year individually with their assigned students
  • engage in individual and group meetings with all students
    • the school provides both individual counseling as well as group counseling to support students in dealing with such issues as divorce, pregnancy, family alcoholism, sexual or physical abuse, death of family members
    • special programs are brought into the school to promote student well-being such as health fairs, speakers on eating disorders, a play on date rape
    • counselors run group meetings to discuss specific academic, social or emotional issues. Discussions include topics such as: future college or career choices, issues related to having a deceased parent, difficulty relating and communicating with peers
  • deliver collaborative outreach and referral to community and mental health agencies and social service providers
    • school personnel have established a collaborative outreach with appropriate mental health agencies, social service providers and other community agencies
    • community agencies collaboratively engage in supporting the school's efforts to address the social, emotional, and physical needs of students (e.g., drug and alcohol counseling programs establish partnerships with the school for both prevention and intervention efforts; the police department provides a youth officer to work directly with the school; a student assistance counselor, funded jointly by the school and local agencies, works within the school)
  • use ongoing, relevant assessment data, including feedback from the school improve community, to improve services and ensure each student’s achievement of the schools’ 21st learning expectations
    • regular feedback from students, parents, and teachers is collected as one basis for evaluating and improving the various student support services
    • support services personnel continually make improvements to their programs and services throughout the year based on feedback and self-assessments
    • counselors and the supervisors/administrators of the counseling program meet on at least a yearly basis to review the services provided and to make needed program revisions
    • the school has established clear evaluation standards for the counseling services and programs that are related to the school’s 21 st learning expectations, and the school assesses the success of these programs in promoting student learning