Rules For Posting To This Blog and Weekly Blog Question

1. Only use your first name (no last names, addresses, IM screen names, etc.)
2. Show respect and consideration of others when posting and commenting. This includes individuals, students, organizations, political parties, colleagues, etc.
3. Check all posts for spelling and grammar errors before posting.
4. Protect the privacy of others. Gain permission from other people before you write about them. Avoid sharing someone else's last name. Use job titles or pseudonyms when writing about experiences with your co-workers or students.
5. Watch your language. Use politically correct and non-offensive language.
6. Make sure you write about things that are factual.
7. Keep your postings education-oriented. Avoid discussing plans for the weekend, etc.

This week I would like you to use your imagination. You have just won the lottery and will leave your teaching post immediately to travel around the world. As you leave your keys you meet your replacement. You are asked to give this new teacher just ONE piece of advice. What would that be, and why? Enjoy your world expedition!

Blog Post - Week 7
This past week in my own teaching I felt a little disconnected which prompts my question to you, "What was the moment (or moments) when I felt most disconnected or disengaged as a teacher - the moment(s) I said to myself, I'm just going through the motions here?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 6
For the past couple of weeks you have experienced asynchronous online learning (doing modules by yourself). Previously this semester you have experienced synchronous online learning (all together in the Collaborate room). Which do you think is more effective and why do you think that? Which do you like better, and why?

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 5
This week we have what we call "open mic." You can write a post about anything related to your teaching that you would like responses from your classmates.

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 4
Here is this week's question: "What was the event that most took me surprise this week - and event that shook me up, caught me off guard, gave me a jolt, or made me unexpectedly happy?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 3
Please write a post about the following question, "In thinking about my past week teaching what is one thing I would do differently, and why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 2
Please write a post about the following question, " In thinking about my teaching activities this past week, of what do I feel most proud? Why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 1
Describe something you used in your program in the first weeks of school that you learned in the summer NTI program. How did it work? Did it get you off to a stronger start than last year?

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Shana Sanders Post 2 -Rewards and Challenges

I believe that one of the most rewarding situations that a school guidance counselor can be in, is to see a student max out on a scholarship offer. I think that sometimes students don't believe that they may be worthy, and or why would I be selected out of the many applicants. Counselors have a responsibility to encourage all students when they are doubting themselves, and when the tables turn for the better, meaning that doubt turns into triumph oh what a sweet victory. I beleive that a challenging part of a counselors career must be the complaints. When a parent or student is not happy that must be annoying. Simply because sometimes humans make mistakes and when those mistakes are highlighted they seem ten times larger than they really are.

Shana Sanders Post 1 -Guidance thoughts after research

After researching and viewing the articles, I noticed that many of the things that I thought counselors should be doing lined up with the research. However I did not realize that I missed adding so many other things that counselors should be doing. Some examples of this include peer to peer counseling, promotion of diversity awareness, coping strategies, study and test taking skills, just to name a few. I think that counselors really do wear many hats when they are effectively operating in their positions. I think that these are wonderful jobs because they give students opportunities to become well rounded adults. Making transitions are never easy no matter what stage of life you are in, and guidance counselors have the ability to make or break that transition for students. I believe this to be true, because in so many words guidance counselors give students their first reality check in the importance of meeting deadlines.

Post 2 - Dwayne Maynard

I believe one of the most rewarding aspects of a guidance counselor's job is seeing lives positively change their course because of their direct involvement with the students. I would imagine day to day they have students that do not listen to a word they say, but I would imagine that when they truly connect with a student, it makes it feel like all those times they were ignored were not in vain. I believe the most challenging parts of the job are teen pregnancy and dropout rates. It is very difficult to change the mind sets of students who encounter these issues. Most of the time, they come from broken families and are seeking attention, positive or negative. At the high school level, these negative attitudes have hardened over so many years that it makes the guidance counselors' jobs much more difficult. A case in point: Two counties that are nearby have daycare services available inside on the high school premises in order to accomodate high school mothers. It is used as a strategy to keep these mothers in school and to lower the county's drop out rates. I believe there are positive and negative aspects to being a guidance counselor. Their job definitely isn't easy.

Post 1 - Dwayne Maynard

After reading the information, my opinion of how hard it is to be a school guidance counselor have not changed. I will say I definitely have a deeper understanding and respect for the work that they do. I never really considered that a counselor would be dealing with issues like gangs, school violence, substance abuse, and terrorism. I thought that these areas would fall under administration. But I guess truly to prevent these things, you would start with a counselor personally involved in these students' lives. I know that when I went to school, terrorism was something that we never thought about being an issue in the schools. School violence was not at the level of Columbine or Virginia Tech. The pressure that some of these counselors must feel is probably overwhelming at times.

Wyndell’s Post 2: Rewards and Challenges

Any time you have an opportunity to touch another persons life in a positive way, there is a reward. Working with people and listening to their trials on a daily basis is very discouraging. So, for this reason, I believe that it is those small, sometimes insignificant conversations where a student comes into the office, discouraged, uncertain or confused and looking for inspiration are where the greatest rewards are found. After a simple conversation, the counselor almost magically pulls the right words out of the air and instantly the spirit of this student is lifted, a reward is received. Changes occur to the expression on their face and a confident thank you for listening to me today may be heard. These are the moments where that I believe counselors receive their greatest rewards. Not only do counselors feel pleased to help someone, they receive a boost in their confidence that they know what they are doing and that they are in the right job. This type of reward is received the most often. It in turn encourages a counselor. This almost daily reward outweighs the depressive affects of regularly dealing with negative problems.
In my opinion, the most challenging part of a counselor’s job is time management. I realize that not being able to reach every child is discouraging. But, if there is enough time, one can try. However, I have seldom been into the counselor’s office at our school when there was not a line of folks waiting to see her. Juggling the obligations of addressing the academic and personal needs of the students, dealing with parental issues, helping teachers and working with the community can quickly tire one out. The feeling of being stretched to thin and never getting caught up is stressful and can quickly become overwhelming.

Wyndell’s Post 1: Viewing Guidance Counselors in a Different Light

My personal impressions of what the roles and responsibilities of guidance counselors have been formed by the example that I have observed in our schools guidance counselor. They remained pretty much unchanged until I read the lists of appropriate and inappropriate uses of counselors on the DOE website. Our guidance counselor is known for being helpful, resourceful, compassionate and caring toward the many students, parents and staff members of our school system. She tries to be all things to all people. She encourages students to try to become someone extraordinary and provide them with a vision of how to achieve their goals. She works diligently to assist everyone who enters her office. Her response to every request is, “I don’t know how I’ll do it, but I’ll try”. She usually succeeds in coming up with an acceptable response. Her responsibilities that I have witnessed are numerous. She works diligently to guide students into making many important life decisions such as choosing a career, class scheduling and college selection. She acts as a psychiatrist for students listening and providing guidance in various personal issues ranging from conflicts with parents, other students and teachers to dating, pregnancy, and loss of a love one. She works with other staff members to keep track of student progress, develop student IEPs, and set up class schedules. She works with the local Technical College to provide dual enrollment classes for our students. She oversees the GAMES program with a local State College. She works with college and military recruiters. She helps students fill out various forms for scholarships, grants, college registration and military draft enrollment. Many times she appears to be a miracle worker. She constantly juggles many tasks at one time while fighting to put out the one with the hottest fire. These are the traits that I have always associated with a guidance counselor.

There are a few technical responsibilities that this assignment has brought out that I did not associate with a guidance counselor. First, I did not realize that according to the State Board of Education Rule 160-4-8-.05 that it was the school counselor’s responsibility to develop a written school-based guidance and counseling program. I previously thought that this would have been spelled out by the state. Also, I did not realize the extent of the counselor’s job was to collect and analyze data pertaining to student achievement. I thought that this information might would have been gathered by the counselor and be sent into the state only to be returned to the school as part of an academic scorecard. Last, I did not realize that a counselor had to spend 5 out of every 6 program hours counseling or advising students or parents. This time requirement surely does not allow for our counselor to do a lot of the extra tasks she does on a daily basis. This assignment has increased the amount of respect that I have for our counselor.

Guidance and Counseling Rewards and Challenges Post 2

I think that school guidance counselor’s face various rewards and challenges of in their jobs. I also think that there is a comparison with teachers and their rewards and challenges. I think that one reward for counselors is for students to graduate on time with the appropriate number of credits, especially since this is one of their major responsibilities. I think that another reward is for former students to successfully complete college and further studies. The most rewarding aspect of this is for the students to return to campus showing great levels of maturity and other accomplishments. Another reward is when seniors receive full and/or partial scholarships to fund their education. This is especially rewarding for the counselors when they have somehow helped the student(s) with the scholarship application process. The counselors face various challenges as well. One challenge is uncooperative students and parents. I am speaking of truancy in this example. Some students come to school when and if they feel like it and many parents are aware of this. The counselors are responsible for tracking as well as documenting these instances. Another challenge is failing and grade repeaters. As hard as teachers and counselors work to ensure student progress, students many times fail to meet the expectations academically. Drop-out rate is another challenge. For those who work in education for the right reasons, we all dread to see the statistics when it comes to increasing drop-out rates. Counselors are faced with the challenge of keeping the students on track and focused so that they can not only graduate, but graduate on time.

Guidance and Counseling Roles and Responsibilities Post 1

Since I’ve been working at Columbia and after completing the Guidance and Counseling Module, I’ve realized that the counselor’s have some additional roles and responsibilities. Guidance counselors are trained to respond to help students cope with emergencies such as injuries, tragedies, and/or deaths. My two cousins who are siblings were two of the three students that were hit or struck by a car as they were walking home from Stone Mountain High School in Dekalb County a few weeks ago. My assistant principal told me that guidance Counselor’s from every Dekalb County High School were to report to Stone Mountain HS to offer Grief Counseling because one of the students was killed in the accident. This is known as crisis management. They also play a role in standardized testing and administration. Counselors also provide support and seminars, forums, and discussions on various topics that are not only for the students, but for parents, teachers, administrators and the community. For students and parents, the counselors invite various colleges, businesses and the armed forces to recruit students. For teachers, the counselors offer classroom speakers and academic support. For administrators, the counselors offer school climate changes and behavior management plans. For the community, the counselors offer job shadowing and work-based learning, crisis intervention, referrals, and career education.

Ginger's Post 2

The most challenging situations unfortunately probably outweigh the rewarding ones but that is just because you are dealing with young students that have many "problems" in their daily life. I know of one challenging situation in particular that one of our guidance counselors had to deal with at our school and I am sure that it is more common than I think. There was a young man that did not know his mother and was being raised by his father until his father went to jail. He had no place to stay, no job, little food, etc. The guidance counselor was able to assist the student with getting his basic needs met to hopefully keep those worries from interfering with his studies. It is challenging because you can only do so much as a counselor and unfortunately, that student still dropped out of school. I know that it must also be challenging to see a student with a wonderful future throw it away over a senseless decision. I could never do this job because even though I am very close with my students, I do not know all of their heartaches and troubles, and do not think that I could emotionally deal with them.

The rewards may be few but they must also be great. I was speaking to a counselor the other day about one of my students. I was just making certain that she was on track to graduate this year. The counselor shared with me that this student was a behavioral problem in the past and has now blossomed to be a wonderful young lady. It must be exciting to see your work make a difference. It is also rewarding in the sense that the students that you assisted with college and career decisions go on to be GREAT people in society. As a guidance counselor, you can make the difference between if a student goes down the wrong path or down a highly successful path. It is the difference that teachers need to succeed also. We could not teach the students if the guidance counselors were not pushing them in the right direction.

Post 2: The Rewards and Challenges

I believe that Guidance Counselors face many challenges, but the one that would be overwhelming to me if I were in that role, would be the number of students that I would be responsible for. Guidance counselors are responsible for all the students in the school and I would imagine that would be a huge challenge. I believe dealing with the different psychological aspects of the job would be difficult and stressful. It would be very hard to leave work at work.

I think that the role of Guidance Counselor would also be very rewarding. You would be able to see the changes in students as they learned how to deal and cope with the different life changes, using the tools that you suggested to them. You would also have the opportunity, just like teachers, to see students succeed in many different aspects of life, (career, post-secondary education, and family,) as a direct result of your impact on their life. That in itself would make all the stress worth it.

Ginger's Post 1

My impressions of the roles and responsibilities of the guidance counselor did not change greatly but I do now have a better understanding of how much detail goes into their job. I knew that they met with each student individually at least twice a year (more if requested) but I did not realize how much information they must cover during those meetings. The guidance counselor must provide counseling programs in three domains: academic, career, and personal/social. I think about how student's moods and decisions change daily. The counselor must be able to decipher through everything and assist the student for their current time in high school but also for their career in the future.

I also did not think about all of their involvement with the special needs students and assisting the student and teachers in making the best decisions. The guidance counselor must attend all IEP meetings, which I know because I am asked to attend many myself, can be overwhelming.

"School administrators sometimes assign counselors such responsibilities as class scheduling, discipline, and administration. These tasks can be integrated with the goals of school counseling but can also dilute the time available for helping individuals." This quote was surprising to me because I thought that it was their job to do scheduling and handle discipline but instead those tasks can sometimes interfere with their true job and purpose of assisting students in making appropriate educational and career choices and to help students overcome personal and social problems which may interfere with learning.

I now feel that the true purpose of a guidance counselor is to have a one on one relationship with the student concerning their academic education, future career goals, and personal issues that may prevent them from being the best they can be. Unfortunately many guidance counselors get dealt so many other tasks that their "purpose" just becomes one of many things to get done. The problem with this is that we end up with students that dream of becoming a nurse, chef, or public defender but never have an opportunity to take these classes in high school because they are not an individual but rather a number.

Post 1: My Revised Opinion of the Role of Guidance Counselors

In my limited experience with Guidance Counselors, I have a new perspective after reading the links. I initially just viewed the guidance counselors as people there to assist the students in choosing proper career pathways and possible college or career choices after high school. Now I see that Counselors have the opportunity to affect the high school student in many ways. Not only are they there to help make those very important decisions, but Counselors are trained to assist students in making good choices about life problems as well. They are trained to help in crisis situations at the school and also many other different situations that teenagers face each and every day. They are trained to work with parents, educators, administrators, and leaders in the community. They have can have a HUGE impact on the student's success in high school and affect their successful transition into the world of work.

Patrick Wood's take on the most rewarding and the most challenging counseling situations.

Likely, a counselor’s most rewarding situation is that of a student who has struggled to finally find their way to success on the coattails of the counselor’s advice and encouragement. As for the most challenging situation faced by a counselor, there are many possibilities. It seems apparent to me that a person willing to undertake the rigorous training and testing to attain certification has obvious care and compassion for students in their heart. Thus, I feel the most challenging situation would be that of a talented student who has given up. Many challenges can be addressed with the counselor’s various weapons. However, finding the magic bullet to destroy a student’s own inner apathy must be the most difficult situation.

Patrick Wood's enlightenment regarding the roles of a counselor

I began this unit with a vague understanding of the roles of school counselors. Now, having researched counseling through several qualified sources, I realize why my school’s counseling staff looks so exhausted at the end of the day—every day. Counseling has undergone a great many changes in its evolution. Clear standards have only recently begun being adopted. Duties vary widely from state to state, county to county, and even school to school within a particular county. As social, economic, and cultural conditions change so must the role of the counselor.

Patrick Wood's initial thoughts on the counselor's role

This is my second year teaching and I must admit that I know little about the actual duties and responsibilities of a counselor. Off the cuff, I would say that a counselor is tasked with ironing out student schedules, keeping tabs on foundering students, and the monitoring of students with troublesome home circumstances that would affect school performance. Additionally, counselors who deal primarily with seniors may be concerned with keeping the students on track to graduate and not fall prey to “senioritis”.

Guidance not just for students

I have been surprisingly impressed with the guidance counselors at Harris County High School. Guidance counselors are an often overlooked member of the educational family. Teachers are a given and administrators are the necessary elements to running the business that is the educational system. Counselors tend to be the glue between teachers, administrators and students. I know a lot is asked of the teacher. It is difficult to teach lessons and remember to keep the individual needs of hundreds of students in mind when trying to prepare them for the future. That is where getting to know your counselor can be invaluable.

I have had the good fortune to have counselors work with me to understand students and to help students get to the proper instruction and classes. It is unfortunate that we can come to take counselors for granted. I hear students and teachers complain often about how the counselor isn't doing enough to help them. They sometimes forget that the counselor is doing all they can to make sure everyone has what they need. Everyone cannot always get everything they want.

True, they can make mistakes from time to time. We are all human. I propose we think to ourselves how much better we are with them than we would be without them. Guidance is the only other career in education that I have seen thus far that I would like to partake other than teaching.

Most rewarding and challenging situations

I believe that being a school guidance counselor is probably full of challenges. It seems like it would be one of those careers where there is never enough time in the day to do all that needs to be done. I imagine that having students come to you and confide in you about unimaginable situations, day in and day out, would have to take its toll. Those would be the type of stories that would keep me up all night worrying or wondering how to best help these students. I also believe that one of the hardest challenges would be knowing that you can't save them all. That is one of the hardest parts of my job as a teacher, so I can only imagine that it is on a much larger scale as a school guidance counselor. I think that one of the greatest rewards would come from seeing the success of those students who had the most challenges. Knowing that the hard work that was put into that student actually paid off. It would be a great feeling to know that you had positively effected that student for the rest of his/her life!

Post 2: Guidance Counselors, most rewarding/most challenging

I think the most rewarding components of the guidance counselors' responsibilities are those that change the outcome of individuals. I have observed the counselors in my school as they scurry about their day. I have noticed that activities that involve preventative intervention, such as mentoring, bring a spark of excitement to them. These experiences allow the counselor to develop a personal connection with the parent, instructor and the student, as everyone works to improve the outcome of the at risk student. These types of activities are often measureable and offer a sense of reward in there accomplishment. As a result the most challenging component maybe parental support for those students that lack a stable home life. I can see how this may be as disappointing as the reward of making the connection and executing the plan for change. In these instances, I have observed counselors taking extra steps to provide the support required for the success of the child. This profession definitely requires a substantial amount of compassion and devotion to the population served.

Revised Opinion of Guidance Counselors

When I wrote the first paragraph for this assignment I felt like I had a pretty good idea of what a school guidance counselor does. If I had gone by what I have witnessed as a teacher I would have thought that the counselors were just the nice folks in the office who mess up my class rosters every semester! I did, however, have an experience with the guidance counselors at my high school when I was a high school student, so I knew that there was more to it than that. I knew from my experience that the counselors were there for students that they considered to be "at risk". What I didn't realize is how much time these counselors have to put into their education. I knew that a counseling degree is usually at a Master's level and takes about 2 years to complete the course work. I did NOT realize that these professionals have to put in 700 hours of practicum hours. Wow! I also had not thought about how all of the problems facing students today (teen pregancy, gangs, etc.) would put so much more on the guidance staff. I had not thought about the fact that the guidance counselors have to be available to the parents and school staff as well as being there for all of the students. I already believed that the counselors were under appreciated and these articles have just confirmed it for me. I don't believe I will be making the change from teacher to guidance counselor any time in my future! What I will do is smile when my roster is messed up at the beginning of each semester and see if there is anything that I can do to help the situation.

Informative response of what I learned

I had reservations about being able to write much about guidance counselors when I first saw this assignment; Little did I know just how much there was to know about guidance counselors.
I just assumed they had always been in all schools and had to have a B.S. or B.A. degree. I had
no idea a Masters degree was necessary and they had to have as many hours of internship and
clinical experience before becoming a counselor. I also, found the history of guidance counselors
very interesting. I found the vocational aspect both informative and disturbing. I do not understand the stigma behind the use of the word "vocational." I find the history goes to serve all who is in education. I do not believe a school system could exist in the way it does today without the help and dedication of the guidance counselor.

My belief of guidance counselor's rewards and challenges

I believe a guidance counselor has a very busy, difficult job. They have to walk a fine line when
helping a student involving abuse. However, they must get great joy out of watching students
they have helped. I can not think of anything much more rewarding than watching a child mature and have structure in their lives, go on to become a better educated, better person because of the work a guidance counselor does everyday. I believe a guidance counselor's job
is a very extensive and involved process. They have great trials and tribulations, as well as, many moments of happiness and satisfaction just knowing that they made a difference in a student, a parent or the community.

My Impression of Guidance Counselors

My personal impressions of the roles of guidance counselors come from a first hand encounter. I had a student that came to me in confidence. He told me things I found hard to believe. I wanted to help him and thought the guidance counselor would be a good start. I knew the counselor and she was happy to assist in the matter. She informed me about her roles and responsibilities and how she could intervene between school and the student's parents. I had no idea that a school
counselor was such an advocate and go between for the students. I thought the school counselor was kind of a lame job and just helped students figure out what classes they needed to graduate.
It is my belief, now, that if it were not for the guidance counselors some students would have no where else to turn. They can help students out of very difficult situations when it comes to suspected child abuse. I believe the roles of the guidance counselor are many and they help students, parents and teachers alike.

Post 2: Rewards and Challenges

Guidance Counselors are known to provide services to students,parents,teachers and the community. I believe most counselors have the desire to help students. However; counselor face challenging and rewarding situation on their jobs. Based on what I read about guidance counselor they help students involved in family crisis such as child abuse. Guidance Counselor face students involved in gang activities and drugs. Some of the rewarding situation guidance counselor face are assisting students to transition into college. They also get students involve in empowerment programs for higher achievement,academics,community service,scholarships etc. I think the most rewarding situation for a counselor is to witness students who mature and develop into young adult and graduate.

Personal Impression Changed

My personal impression of a guidance counselor has changed after reading the research activity. Apparently the guidance counselor's role and responsibilities are very demanding and time consuming. Also, it pleases me to know the counselor assist students,families,teachers and the community. They are a true asset for our students as they define themselves and become independent. I discovered guidance counselors earn diverse training and knowledge to accommodate all people. Since I know more about the guidance counselor role and responsibility,I can't wait to capture the benefits they have to offer to the students,parents and teachers. Gaining move knowledge about guidance counseling will give me directions to assist more students more effectively.

Rewards and Challenges -Post 2

I think one of the biggest challenges faced by GCs is universal understanding and assistance from staff. There are many times when we as educators are asked to complete various forms, refer a certain population and collect data. The requests go unanswered and are oftentimes disregarded. I along with other staffers are guilty of complaining about the extra work that I don't have time to do for other people. Because the GCs are situated in the front office and they rarely come out until test time, people wonder "What are they doing?"; "What do they do everyday?" and "If I do their job, I won't be able to do mine". I am now able to see the importance of the requests. I can now associate counselor's request to the census count. The information is needed to get better programming, more opportunities and an effective counseling department that can better serve the masses.

I think the most rewarding situation a GC faces is when they have worked a case from top to bottom with a powerful and fruitful resolution. I believe counselors are compassionate people that want the best for our students. When faced with a problem beyond scheduling, if a counselor can obtain resources from the community to help not only the student but his/her family, I think that alone reward GCs immeasurably.

Revised Opinion- Post 1

After reading the provide links associated with the roles and responsibilities of guidance counselors, my original opinion towards GC's (guidance counselors) changed considerably. I was impressed with the amount of times I saw the word/phrase "Career, Career Planning, Career Plans and Professional development". Instantaneously I begin to think..hmm..they might not be so bad after all. I found it hard to believe that career was one of the primary focuses of GC's. This is partly because of the interaction the CTE department has with GCs at my school. I was somewhat aware of the amount of education required to become a counselor but because of obvious reasons, I pushed that fact to the back of my mind. Before reading the state's requirements of counselors, I always thought they were only in charge of testing, collegiate visitations, transcripts, seasonal employment opportunities (for students) and class scheduling. Now I have a bit more compassion for my counterparts. I am more aware of ALL of what they are responsible for and a little less critical of mistakes they make from time to time. I still believe counselors should be required to do walk-thrus just as an administrator / chairperson. The counselors walk-thru would of course have a different feel to them in comparison to those of administration. I also believe that this act would contribute greatly to the CTE department and clarify a need for various programs. Counselors would then be allowed to see how differently a class of 38 looks a whole lot differently in person than on paper.
The amount of education required of counselors could not only help the students but teachers as well. I just feel that amount of time put into obtaining their certification is going to waste behind a desk.
I will continue to peruse the links for a better understanding of GCs roles in an effort to work together in tandem with the counseling department.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Thozi - Overall Impressions of Guidance and Counseling in America

Having lived in another country for over fifty years, and having been exposed to the readings mentioned in this assignment, I can definitely say with confidence that America is leading the world in the provision of needed services in the preperation of young people as they transition through school into becoming adults. The changes that have come about have sprung from the academic world, from society, from research, from forward-looking thinkers and philosophers who challenged the status quo. Government structures (at least in theory) have come to assist in the smooth running of professional activities that impact on the young people in schools. Society has itself changed dramatically. People and technologies are in constant motion. As a result, the face of the school guidance and counseling profession has also changed in order to keep pace. The profession has apparently moved from being non-existent when public education began, to being a powerful and positive force in the provision of services for school-age populations. Changes that originated in America are shown to have had an effect in other countries far away from the shores of this land. The amount of knowledge that I have been personally exposed to in this one instance has been tremendous. I feel certain that if America continues in this way, it will be a guide to many more nations, and it will be an example to be emulated by others in the centuries to come.

Post 1: My changed view of the role of Guidance Counselors

After completing the review of the history and review of the Guidance Counselor, my view of the role and responsibilities is essentially unchanged. As a parent of 2 elementary schools, I have had the opportunity to observe the active role and responsibilities of the 2 wonderful counselors employed in my children's school. As an instructor, I have had the opportunity to observe how the counselors at my school interact with the students and the staff. The counselors in my school are always "strapped" for time. The review of the assigned websites helped me to realize that the role of the counselor is so broad and all encompassing that there are major struggles to complete all of the tasks associated with the job. Their role touches the student, the instructor, the administrator, the parent and the community. That is quite a task to accomplish in a large population of students. I had a deep respect for the tasks that counselors assume prior to completing the website reviews. I still do.

The most amazing component to me was the review of the educational requirement to fulfill the M.Ed at GSU and UGA. I was floored to find that candidates are required to complete 700 practicum hours. Although both educational institutions offer the convenience of evening and summer classes, that has to be an extremely burdensome undertaking. When I think about the commitments to family, employment, and social/community involvement, I contemplate how an individual maintains sanity during this educational venture. Overwhelmingly, this has earned the highest esteem for those professionals that are capable of completing the rigors associated with the program requirements. I believe that those rigors help to prepare the counselors for the career demands that are experienced once employed as a school counselor. During a 700 hour practicum, I am sure that the professionals develop skills and interventions that give them the confidence and knowledge to guide the population served. Once again, I possessed a deep respect for the tasks that counselors conquer every day prior to the reviews. I still do

Thozi : Most Rewarding and Challenging Experiences

The most rewarding experience for a counselor is go into the classroom and teach guidance related activities directly to students. These activities include the following: How to prepare for academic success, Decision making, Conflict resolution, Substance abuse, Applying for Financial Aid, Preparing for the SAT, Time management skills.

The most challenging experience for a school counselor would be to do scheduling, particularly at the beginning of the year or at the beginning of the semester. Scheduling also includes making changes to existing schedules. It is a stressful time by sheer volume of work that needs to be done. It is a busy time, it is intense, it is high-paced, and people express high emotions. The work is decidedly difficult because it is impossible to please everyone. Sometimes counselors have to deal with angry people, who may be teachers, students or parents.

Thozi: Changed Impressions of the Role of Guidance Counselors

The most striking change that seems to come to light is societal. The population is becoming increasingly diverse and mobile. New technologies are being introduced almost every other day, if not on a daily basis. By definition, therefore, students should be adequately prepared to be the next generation of parents, leaders, business people and citizens. The way in which this could be done is to offer guidance, support and counseling during the transition into adulthood and the world of work. The profession of school counselors has risen to meet this need. In addition, professionals have argued that appropriate support, guidance and counseling services are called for even when students are younger, while in the formative elementary and middle school grades. I had no idea of all the above.

School counselors are professional educators who have a mental health perspective, who understand challenges presented by today’s increasingly diverse and fast changing society. They are now an integral part of the educational program. They design, develop, implement and evaluate a comprehensive, developmental and systematic school counseling program. There are national performance and ethical standards by which they are expected to abide.

Moreover, there are structures in government that are designed to lend their support to counseling professionals. The Division of Learning Support implements programs and services to support successful academic achievement as well as school completion by all students. These include school counseling, school social work, school psychology, alternative education and many others. They recommend certain time allocations for guidance and Counseling services from Elementary through High School. Of particular note would be the recommended time allocations for Guidance which decline slightly from 50% (Elementary) to 30% (High School). At the same time, Counseling services are supposed to increase from 10% (Elementary) to 30% (High School). The rest of the school counselor’s time should be spent on System Support, Responsive Services and non-program activities. Very interesting, indeed! And it is quite new to me, I might add.

The preparation of school counselors takes place at universities, such as the University of Georgia and Georgia State University, among others. It is overseen by knowledgeable professors who study the field, research, write papers, articles and books, and address conferences on the subject. Therefore the required rigor in school counselor preparation is ensured by these institutions.

After reading the websites, my personal impressions have changed completely. My old impressions have been thrown out the window. I have gained more respect for the profession. I have learned that it is a worthwhile profession that has evolved through time. It is a live profession that keeps pace with the changes taking place in our society. It is a needed profession that makes it possible for students to be better prepared for adulthood, citizenry and the world of work. It has an organization that maintains ethical and performance standards. I can only give unlimited praise to the work done by school guidance and conseling professionals in our schools.

Post 2: Rewards and Challenges

Guidance Counselors deal with many diverse challenges everyday. I believe the most challenging task for them is finding a technique of guidance for those "below average" students that are affected by outside influences. From gangs, to abuse, to dropout rates, etc., these students need help that may take extra work time in order for them to get on the right track. With the changing economy, many students are dropping out for full time employment that doesn't require degrees or certifications. It is difficult, if not impossible for a guidance counselor to assist these students. This is why I am so interested in vocational degrees; to find students' interests before they get into the working world. During the challenges, I believe there are many rewarding situations from this job. Not only are the guidance counselors rewarded from "valedictorian type" students' success, they are rewarded from seeing changes in behaviors from the "below average" students through their 4 year relationship. These students have the most room to grow, so when they graduate, it should be very rewarding. Another reward is seeing classrooms prepare their students for careers and being confident that they will succeed.

Bruce - Guidance Module POST 2

The most challenging aspect of a guidance counselor's job, in my opinion, must be dealing with so many different students effectively, with a positive outcome. I would not want to tell a student that they were not accepted to their school of choice, or would need to be enrolled in a remedial course the next semester. Dealing with all of the broken hearts and dreams would be very difficult. With those disappointments might also come upset parents. Being a master adviser to all of the students to which you are assigned must be incredibly difficult. The most rewarding aspect of the guidance counselor's job plays off of what I feel may be the most challenging aspect. That is, watching students achieve their dreams for the next major step in their life. Guiding students through the applications and financial aid process as well as all of the other paperwork required to enter college or technical school, and delivering them at their goal must be highly rewarding. Anytime that a student chooses the path of higher education, there is a sense of accomplishment as an educator. But, to be with the student through the entire process and see them through to the achievement of their goal must be especially rewarding.

Post 1: New Impressions of Guidance Counselors

The research articles furthered my impressions of guidance counselors as I gained new resourceful information to help me in the field. Before, I had a basic understanding only from past experience as a student. I now understand how complex a guidance counselors schedule can be. For instance, the "recommended time allocations" chart taught me the differences between "guidance" and "counseling" and the time allowed for both. I learned that data-driven evaluations can change a guidance counselors workload which is a difficult task considering if time is added to one category, it is taken away from another. New techniques are constantly being used; I never would have thought "terrorism" would be discussed, but now understand that guidance counselors must deal with "every" situation. Most of all, I learned how intertwined our vocational courses are with the help of guidance counselors and the minimal time allowed for them to be involved with career planning. Now that I understand more about guidance counselors, I know now that we will be working together a lot more than I had known.

Bruce - Guidance Module POST 1

The biggest surprise I encountered during the research for the Guidance Counselor Module was the emphasis on the mental/behavioral aspect of dealing with students. I remember in elementary school, the guidance counselors were very involved in teaching us about personal character, conflict resolution etc. At the high school level, I never considered that many students may still need those lessons, and the guidance counselor must be prepared to deal with those students effectively. I could only imagine having to tell a student that the college/career of their choice would not be a viable option for them. It is a good thing counselors are prepared to help our students on a variety of fronts. I was also impressed by the long list of items the state DOE has assigned to counselors to be either in charge of, or assist with. I always knew that the guidance department was a busy place - now I know exactly why. My impressions of the education requirements for guidance counselors has also changed. My post-secondary experience was in Mass Media, not education, leaving me with little knowledge of everything teachers must learn before entering the classroom. I had mistakenly lumped guidance counselors in with the average undergrad who majors in education. Now I know the academic pursuit one must undertake to become an effective guidance counselor.

Counseling Module Post 2

One thing that is rewarding for a counselor is seeing the student graduate from high school. Also seeing a student getting accepted into a four year college, two year college or tech school to further their education and building their future. Another rewarding experience for the counselor would be when a student has had problems ranging from personnel to academic to over come them to graduate. Having a student tell a counselor thank you for their help would mean allot to them. A challenge that counselor face and one that i have seen in person is when they have to tell a student that they are not going to get into the college of their choice. Telling a student that the are not going to graduate this year or they have to come back the next year to finish high school. Dealing with parents that think their child does know wrong and that they are better than what the are. Also counselors now are having to deal with students that are homeless and dealing with parents and students that has a drug problems. Again i would say having to ability to make or break a students life after the leave high school is pressure that is strong challenge.

Counseling Module Post1

Reading the information from the web sites made me realize that counselors have allot of pressure on them when it come to doing their job. As a counselor you have the pressure of making or breaking the career of a student. The role of the counselor and parent is closer than i ever thought. If the parents did not go to college or have knowledge of the items needed for a student to complete and be on track to get in school may fall all on the counselor. Being able to deal with students and parents with mental problems is also a challenge to them. They see more of it than the teachers at time. The pressure again on counselors to place students in the right classes for them to get the education to take them to next level is very important. One wrong move and that student may fail in life for the mistake that a counselor may have made or overlook in paper work.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Thozi: Personal Impressions of Roles of Guidance Counselors

The role of the guidance counselor is to provide alternative career paths to students who require them. Students who do well in their subjects do not need a Guidance Counselor. Students who require counseling services are those who do not perform well in their studies. This poor performance may be due to psychological or other behavioral problems that they may be dealing with. Guidance counselors should advertise their services widely within the school, so that students are made aware of their presence and the assistance they may provide. Guidance counselors should encourage all struggling students to seek counseling. Students should perform Intelligence Tests and other Personality Inventories in order for the counselor to have a much clearer idea of where the student's strengths truly lie. In this way, the role of the guidance counselor is to minimize and prevent academic failure by promoting the correct subject choices for students. Guidance counselors work mainly and only with students who need their services. These were my impressions when I began reading about guidance and counseling.

Comment 1

Hal, I was reading the last paragraph of your blog when you stated after previewing the qualifications and observing the duties and responsibilities of the guidance counselors you will stick to teaching. I agree whole heartily because even today the guidance counselor along with the psychologist was trying to get a group together to talk with at risk kids who have paramount problems at home and coping with the problems have become unbearable for these kids. One of the guidance counselors came to me and asked would I be interested in becoming a mentor with male at risk students, which I agreed. In the environment that we teach in we are trying to save kids lives and teach them academics at the same time. The counselors here are dealing with crisis day in and day out and they perform beautifully. I have always had the deepest respect for our guidance counselors on the jobs they perform daily ans again I agree with Hal, I think I will stay in the classroom.

Module Post 2

Guidance counselors probably feel the greatest reward when they put strategies in place that helps a student achieved their projected goals and gone on to become successful in a challenging academic environment. Also changing a student mind who was contemplating dropping out of school and due to the strategic counseling strategies he/she was convinced to stay in school and later become a high school graduate and later possibly go on to college or technical school. Imagine a student returning later and informing the guidance counselor that because of you and your advice I became successful in the profession you help me choose.
The think the most challenging for a guidance counselor, could be when they see a promising student that they were working with eventually decides to drop out of school due to some social or personal issues. In the alternative setting as I stated earlier we have a lot of students with BIPs and IEPs, and it definitely can be challenging setting a curriculum that will help these students become successful in the academic environment. Guidance counselors also have to ensure that students are properly instructed and prepared for all state mandated testing so that their assigned schools has to meet all AYP standards. That is definitely challenging because you do not want to be reported as a failing academic school.

Module Post 2

As I stated earlier prior to reviewing the web-sites assigned, I discovered that the counseling profession is very challenging along with the academia. They are the compass for the students who are still traveling in the dark. Most of the students at the alternative school have received more valuable information to get themselves prepared to complete the required hours to graduate or get placed into the appropriate grade level. Then the counselors have to deal with certain social issues the students are facing and try to provide the support through certain available programs to help them achieve their goals. As I browsed the American School Counselors Association web-site, counselors are so pivotal to our student’s success, they even celebrate counselors for a week in February.

Couseling Module Post 1

Module Post 1

The environment I work in at the Alternative school with limited resources and a lot of students with various academic problems, stemming from being arrested or have not attended school for extended periods of time; I have the upmost respect for the counselors who work with us. Most of the students we receive, 30 to 40% have IEPs, BIPs or other challenging mental issues. These counselors are warriors and they encapsulate many duties within their profession and I believe outside their profession also. I really do not know until I gather further information on their duties, but I can only imagine the academics and training to prepare them for the rigors of their job, especially the counselors that are here with us at the alternative school.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Module Activity 2 Post 2

I believe one of the most rewarding and challenging situations that guidance counselors face in their jobs would be Individual/family/school crisis intervention. Knowing that you can step in and help a student in desperate need has got to be rewarding. I can see the challenge, because some students might not be receptive to your efforts. For those of us who have never seen that ugly side of life, it really makes you wonder if you could do what they do everyday. This also ties into coping strategies. What if a student is having difficulty adjusting to the loss of a loved one? The counseling office has to deal with this often, and that has got to be extremely difficult. Overall I think the most rewarding feeling is knowing you helped a student, and the most challenging is not being able to help them all.


Module Activity 2 Post 1

I don't know if I would say my impression changed as much as I was just shocked to see how much I actually didn't know. I had a basic understanding, but never realized how many "hats" counselors actually have to wear. I guess one thing I took for granted was how many people our counselors have to collaborate with at any given time. For every student the counselors work with, they also have to involve administrators, teachers, and parents. I was really surprised by how much the counseling percentages increased as students progressed from elementary to high school. Being at the high school level I honestly thought it would be higher in the middle school age. The curriculum that you must complete to become a counselor was probably the most surprising aspect of all. That is an intense work load, not to mention the hours you have to log as well. After researching information on counselors, I think it's safe to say that I will stick with teaching.


Just wanted to share

I hope sharing this helps you all in the future. I hope and pray you never experience this, but there is nothing in the teaching books about how to handle the loss of a student. Since this post is on counseling I thought it may be a good time to share this with you all. Over the holidays Hailey Miller (15 years old) one of my students in my 6th period class and a member of our SADD club passed away due to complication from knee surgery. This was a tragic shock to say the least. I relied on my faith and police experience on how to console and handle her grieving classmates/friends. Our counseling department and administration was very supportive as well. Shortly after this same time we learned that one of our football players (Trey Rood) who is battling stage 4 cancer had a scan come back that revealed 2 new "spots". Every school has tragedies and I know we are not the first and will unfortunately not be the last. However if I can say one thing (and you all already seem to do it) please be significant in your student's lives. Please get to know them and make an impact in their lives. Prayerfully the impact will last forever while they grow old, but that is not always the case. Hailey had a Christmas card that she wrote to me prior to her surgery. Her Mom and Dad gave it to me after her death. Hailey will live in my heart forever and I hope and pray I made an impact in her life the short time I taught her. As far as Trey goes he made a plaque that read "God doesn't choose the qualified...he qualifies the chosen!" He made a plaque for himself and for me. I told Trey that quote back in October before he spoke at Fields of Faith because he was doubting himself. Keep being a significant part of your student's lives, it truly does matter. You all rock...I hope this post does not offend anyone and I hope Dr. M or Dr. Burns are not upset with this being posted.



Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Item #3b Most challenging for guidance counselors

Challenging careers ! Yes guidance counselors face challenges daily. As stated in the reading material guidance counselors definitely have a mental health perspective. They meet with challenging situation that include dealing with adolescents ,their mental and social growth to their social norms and even economic situations . They are poised with many challenges with the youth of today ,mainly due to the issues of today's society . They are responsible for freshman scheduling to the antsy graduating senior , and the school administrators to the complaining parents and even the teachers with all their issues and the delicate handling student with IEP's. They are face with facilitating and administering testing for students and to provide a open door policy for students and ALL their needs daily, weekly and Yearly.

Item #3 Most rewarding for guidance counselors

I feel that guidance counselors have very rewarding careers . They provide services that help not only the students ,but also the teachers and even the community at large. Guidance Counselors also assist student in areas that strenghten their skills in many aspects with include things such as ; goal setting ,academic plans,Career planning ,along with transitioning from school to industry. several counselors I spoke with stated they enjoy their role as counselors as apposed to their roles as former teachers , they also stated that the many aspects of guidance counseling provides a chance to interact with the student in their develpoment ,Guidance counsulors are the heart beat of any school sysytem , they bring to the table "A bridge" a bridge that every student will cross. And guidance counselors are the navigators .

Item #2 How has the role of guidance counselors changed?

They role of counselors has changed drastically of the years As in the described in materials I read , since the turn of the century mentoring as always been a intricate part of education as far back as early Greece and even during ancient Rome . Vocational Education started in the early nineteen hundreds . In all actually the education reform began with the "sweat shops " during the "Great Depression" was the where counseling and guidance took education reform to a whole different level. Children where force to work in harsh labor situation to support and feed their families . Currently children do work in Labor situation whoever these situation are to better the students academics while allowing, the students to transfer their learning in education to industry , The horrid conditions of the past are long gone . and the role of guidance counselors have now changed since the turn of the century , the Counselors of today are much more student centered , school centered and industry centered . They also have a great responsibilitiy to chart, track and monitor student acheivement.

Item #1 Personal Impessions Roles and Responsibilities of Guidance Counselors

My personal impressions , are as such during this lesson .I had the opportunity to sit down with our Junior /Senior school counselor at Laney High School , while conducting my interview with Ms. Rolland . I received first hand the and eye -opening experience of her day in just , one hour from constant incoming phone calls to teachers early arrival that just want to get a glimpse of her for a few seconds, to parents of graduating seniors waiting patiently to see her , all that I might add did not schedule an appointment with her , well these thing all are much more important that my interview for NTI , student ,parents and business call all that precedence over my interview. I notice how she was able to multi-task with each challenge that she encounted , and through it all I received a quality interview , never mind the fact that all the events of the day began at 6:30am , just one hour before the start of the school day , My personal impression of a school counselors as such , they consul and nurture the mind ,body and soul of every student that passes through there door, they encourage teachers with host of resources that me assist with students academics and they motivate and encourage student achievement. I was very much overwhelmed with their job description

The most rewarding and challenging situations that school guidance counselors face

School guidance counselors get to be a significant part of between 250-500 students lives if not more a year. That doubles if not triples the amount of students a normal teacher can be a significant part of. This significance is not only with academic issues/decisions, but with social and developmental decisions and issues. The one on one time maybe brief, but it is usual highly efficient and effective. The ripple effect the guidance counselor has on a student's family can be endless with the successful direction and guidance of one's son or daughter. I always say police work is a front row seat to the greatest show on earth. If that is true and I believe it is, guidance counselors have the next best seat in the house!
Counselor Module – Rewarding and Challenging Situations Facing Counselors Post 2 (M.Redding)
I would imagine counselors find it rewarding when students learn to trust them enough to openly share personal thoughts and feelings. Equally rewarding would be creating an environment where students can relax and feel safe. Affording children an opportunity to bond with someone who accepts them, is dependable, and always supports them, must be an amazing reward. Helping students set goals and seeing students meet those goals would be rewarding to a counselor, as it is to traditional classroom teachers. Being a child advocate must also be tremendously rewarding Challenging situations could include feeling overwhelmed by the volume of work required and lack of resources available to students and counselors. I would imagine the deterioration of social morality also contributes to increasing stress facing counselors. Dealing with students’ stresses everyday must be extremely difficult over time. I’m sure there are many challenges facing counselors I cannot imagine. The counselor interview will enlighten me regarding rewards and challenges I have not considered.
Counselor Module – Perceptions Following Module Post 1 (M. Redding)

Upon completion of the Counselor Module, many of my perceptions remain unchanged.
I did, however, realize I had not considered many of the responsibilities that fall within the role of counselor. Guidance and Counseling Curriculum provisions for standards and objectives aligned with the State QCC wasn’t a surprise, but I had not thought about counselors having to adhere to formalized state curriculum. Hospital homebound and homebound involvement was another responsibility I hadn’t considered. Creating and supporting school substance abuse prevention education was another area of involvement I overlooked. Also overlooked was the possible interaction with law enforcement regarding child neglect and abuse issues. Helping students deal with teen pregnancy, even at the middle school level, is a reality. Addressing gang related issues, unfortunately, is also a reality. The scope of counselor responsibilities is overwhelming. I hope my perception of counselors having to pick up unrelated additional administrative duties proved to be false. I look forward to interviewing my school counselor next week.

My impression of the changing roles and responsibilities of the school guidance counselor over history

School guidance counselors roles and responsibilities have changed over the years from one of spiritual guidance with the Catholic Priests to a vocational swing that lasted into World War One. During that time teachers doubled as counselors. Next their roles and responsibilities changed to standardized testing and trying to identify leaders primarily for the military. This lasted past World War Two when the new "non-directive" theory of counseling took place. This type of counseling was client based with the client feeling more in control. Counseling then took on the academic role with fear of the United States falling behind in math and science education. This also leaned the roles and responsibilities towards a kinder gentler side. This sensitivity training lent it's hand to counseling special needs students, handicapped students and students with various disabilities. Counselors then found themselves to be "gatekeepers" to IEP's and SST's. In the mid 1990's to present day counselors are seen with high standards and an intricate part of the educational process for all students.

Rewards and Challenges of Being a Guidance Counselor (Lyndi Quinones)

Guidance counselors are able to directly impact student success in academic, career development, and personal growth. They offer the students an outlet when parents, teachers, and peers have not had an understanding rapport with them. With the implementation of specific standards and legislations, guidance counselors are able to provide services with students before personal crises or academic deficiencies become too big to bear. They share in the successes of the school by being advocates not just for the students they serve, but also for the teachers who often times are blamed for students' personal and academic obstacles in school. On that same note, teachers and guidance counselors can disagree on the roles that the latter takes on, relying on guidance counselors to be disciplinarians instead of meaningful members of the faculty. Due to the many roles guidance counselors undertake, they may not be ultimately happy with what they are doing, and the passion that brought them to this field may be lost to more mundane tasks within the school. Opportunities for professional development seem limited to mostly teachers, so the thought of having them be absent to attend conferences or other events may be an expense that the school may not pay or grant to them. All in all, the importance of guidance counselors within high schools is felt with much praise for them, but there needs to be more of a balance when it comes to giving them adequate time to complete the job they signed up to do.

Newer Impressions of the Roles of Guidance Counselors (Lyndi Quinones)

After going through the reading and literature on the history of guidance counseling, its requirements within the university settings, and the time allocations in high school for the state of Georgia, I am more convinced that guidance counselors can still be a crucial advocate in the academic success of our students. Even so, the economic constraints that our school systems are feeling make it so that their positions are the first to be examined in terms of efficacy and the schools' economic sustainability. The roles of guidance counselors have remained the same; they are not just looked at people who will listen, but also as members of the administration who coordinate testing schedules and materials, plan events that bring about community support, assist teachers within the classroom setting, and even serve as assistant principals on a regular basis. When they are allowed to effectively do their jobs, guidance counselors are involved in a positive partnership between parents, teachers, and students. Unfortunately, the many roles that they take on within their schools can impair their ability to feel fulfilled and happy in their roles as guidance counselors and, more often than not, create a sense of burnout and fatigue rather than zeal and enthusiasm for their work. Nevertheless, parents continue to rely on guidance counselors to help their students as they grow and develop throughout adolescence and confront the challenges that come with turning into an adult.

Challenges and Rewards of a Secondary Counselor

I would think that the most rewarding part of behing a secondary counselor would be to see a student you have worked with become a successful member of society. To see, basically, a child grow to become a father, husband, business owner or leader in the community. I think the reward would be further accentuated if the said student were challenged in some way. educationally, environmentally etc. I think the most challenging part about being a secondary counselor would be the current state of this country. With the economy in it's current state, it must be difficult to attempt to plan a career for the students. And with so many out of work the tales that must be told has to be heartbreaking. As much as someone who looks to help wants to, in reality, everyone cannot be saved financially or helped to find a career. I can only imagine the level of frustration they must have currently. I know I would be frustrated.

My New Impression of Guidance Counselors

After reading the information provided to us in the learning module I have learned a few things. First of all I had no idea that formal guidance counseling has been around for a century or more. Secondly there are many educational requirements with a guidance counseling profession. Furthermore, I had no idea they were so involved in so many students lives and at so many levels, including helping to develop an adolescents self awareness. To me that's pretty deep! I was always aware of their involvement in the students academics and support with learning skills as well as career planning. But, who would have thought they would deal with family crisis intervention. Reading this information was a real eye opener.

Challenge and Reward

In looking at the history of the school counselor we have seen tremendous change in the challenges that our students face, which has also had a direct impact on the challenges for the counselor. One of the biggest problems that I think the counselor faces is the growing number of non traditional family units. In the 50’s and 60’s parents would send their kids to school with a foundation of a traditional two parent home support unit. Education was a priority and a joint venture to the parents of the 50’s and 60’s. Many of the homes today have single parents that never completed high school themselves and students seem to think it’s ok because their parents never finished. The work ethic of some of the parents that carries over with many of the students creates an environment that is not conducive for learning. Morals of some of the single parent homes also create challenges for today’s counselor. Despite the example that may be demonstrated by the counselor in the six hour day, it is hard to overcome the complex lives and examples that are instilled in the student in their home environment. There are also the negative role models that seem to inundate the students. The emphasis is on making quick money by involving one’s self in illegal activity. Education has a hard time competing with “Why should I wait when I have it now by doing this activity or some other activity?” This is a quick fix to a basic “Maslow” deficiency. This will feed for a day but not a life time. It must also be said that there are some great single mothers and fathers that do a wonderful job in teaching and working with their children at home. What I think would be most rewarding is to see the students that you reach through all the challenges that you face. With all the changes that face the counselor today what will face the counselor in the next generation?

What I Think Has Changed

In comparison of my first impression and expectations of the Guidance Counselor before and after reading the given links, they have not changed that much. One area that I think that has changed most to me is the understanding of the training and education that is involved in becoming a counselor. The one thing that I did overlook was the aspect of the counselor’s outreach to the parent and family. My thoughts were more in the school and not as broad as the reading took me. I did find that the history of the Guidance Counselor has deep roots, and dates back more than I realized. Most guidance counseling was vocational in nature during its beginning. Taking a look at the dates, it would stand to reason that its foundation would be vocationally based. I think that after my interview I will also gain additional knowledge regarding Guidance Counselors

Monday, January 25, 2010

Rewards & Challenges of School Counselors

I would think that having a student be successful during & post school because of the dedication & work of a school counselor would be the most rewarding experience. There seem to be many factors that can influence student success, but having a good working relationship with a student and their family can make all the difference. A school counselor can be in that position. I see counselors and the work load they have. Having to drop other students when a child or family arrives in crisis can be quite overwheming. The other part that I see as challenging is that parents often expect the counselors to solve all of the problems, academic and social, which are interfering with the student's educational success.

New Impressions on School Counselors

The information that I was able to obtain from the readings gave me a little shake up. I really believed that the primary and most important part of the school counselor was to guide students in their course choices and future plans. According to the chart on the department of education site, about 70% of the counselors time is to be spent on non curriculum activity. If you look at the course work required by both UGA and GSU, this trend will continue. Many of the required classes deal with support, counseling, and developmental issues. Social issues that permeate today's society have a direct impact on the students ability to perform, thus making the counselor's job more layered. As I read through the history of counseling, I can see how my impressions of the counselors role were related to the times that I have had dealings with them. In the last several years more emphasis has been placed on the counseling effort. But who is guiding the children in post secondary choices? My guess from the readings is that left unaddressed the social issues will overtake the educational necessities. This is the job of the school counselor- to help keep these issues in balance, for a positive outcome.

Rewarding and Challenging Situations POST 1

The rewards would be seeing a student advance to college and the work force with a great career ahead of the student they also get a chance to make a difference in a students career and their life situations to make them a better person . The challenges what I see is trying to take time and see all the students. I just don't see that the counselor has the time to see 1000 students per counselor. It's impossible with cut backs everything else. They have a lot of different jobs to do promote classes, finance, family, student, teacher, administration and the list goes on.

Guidance and Counseling POST 2

First of all the definition of Guidance is something that provides direction and advice. Counselor is someone who gives advice about problems. I thinks is is hard for counselors to place children in the correct classes because they may not have the time or classes available for the student. I also see that counselors can help students financial now there was a time they could not offer medical and food services to help families. The guidance counselors just have so much work to do for such a big group of students some students may fall through the cracks because they never get to have guidance or counsel.