There are many things that can impact a child's success at school: problems
with friends, anger, lack of responsibility, death or divorce in the family,
etc. When a child is dealing with issues in his/her life it is difficult to
focus on school work. The counselor's job is to help the child develop
strategies that will help him/her face, cope or resolve problems.
Students may be referred by teachers, parents or a student may make a self
referral. Individual counseling takes place during recess or a time when
classwork will be impacted the least. Usually the counselor meets with the
student once a week for 15-20 minutes. Counseling may involve one visit or it
may involve several sessions. Sometimes a referral is suggested if the
situation requires more expertise than the counselor's qualifications.
Some times small groups are ultilized to help several students at once who can
benefit from the interaction of other students facing the same challenge.
Counselors are bound by Confidentiality - meaning "anything a student
discusses with the counselor will be held in total confidence unless
information is disclosed about plans to harm ones-self or someone else, abuse
is indicated, or illegal action if being planned. By law these things must be
reported, investigated and proper action taken". (American School Counselors