Goals of the Elementary School Counselor:
1. To help children understand themselves and others.
2. To enhance interpersonal skills.
3. To implement a plan for all staff and students to learn, practice and apply conflict resolution skills and strategies.
4. To provide crisis intervention when necessary.
5. To coordinate or facilitate efforts of parents, teachers and administrators.
6. To help develop personalized programs, when applicable, based on each child’s strengths and needs.
7. To provide career education activities.
Counselors work with students in the classroom, presenting whole group lessons, individually and in small groups. The counseling method differs with the student, situation and need.
Classroom teachers and school counselors support each other’s work through classroom observation, consultation, sharing information and modeling skills through classroom lessons. The teacher and counselor also work closely as members of a team who assist children with academic and behavioral concerns.
Consulting with parents is an important part of the elementary counselor’s job. Counselors may consult with parents regarding their children on a variety of topics, including: discipline and setting appropriate expectations, test interpretation, family responsibility and behavioral management strategies.
OTHER SCHOOL STAFF
Counselors work closely with administrators and other pupil personnel specialists on such areas as discussing student needs and evaluating specific programs.
Qualifications of an Elementary School Counselor
1. Masters degree in Guidance and Counseling from an approved Counselor Education program.
2. Pennsylvania State Certification.
3. Experience in dealing with academic and personal issues with students, staff and parents and the ability to suggest options and solutions to problems.
4. Knowledge about community resources that offer services to meet varying needs.
5. A caring, sensitive person who is responsible and respectful of confidences.