School counselors celebrate during National School Counseling Week
National School Counseling Week, sponsored by the American School Counselor Association, will be celebrated from Feb. 6–10, to focus public attention on the unique contribution of professional school counselors within United States' school systems and how students are different as a result of what school counselors do. National School Counseling Week highlights the impact school counselors can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career. In Maine, the Maine School Counseling Association is the state chapter that supports and advocates for school counselors.
Gov. Paul LePage, in a proclamation, cited school counselors for being actively engaged in helping students examine their abilities, strengths, interests and talents; for working in a partnership with parents as they encounter the challenges of raising children in today's world; for focusing on positive ways to enhance students' social/personal, educational and career development; and working with teachers and other educators to provide an educational system where students can realize their potential and set healthy, realistic and optimistic aspirations for themselves
The special week honoring school counselors provides recognition for school counselors who implement comprehensive school counseling programs, a vital part of the educational process for all students as they meet the challenges of the 21st century. School counselors are actively engaged in helping students examine their abilities, strengths, interests and talents; they work in a partnership with parents as they encounter the challenges of raising children in today's world; they focus on positive ways to enhance students' social/personal, educational and career development; and they work with teachers and other educators to provide an educational system where students can realize their potential and set healthy, realistic and optimistic aspirations for themselves. Professional school counselors are certified, experienced educators with a master's degree in guidance and counseling. The combination of their training and experience makes them an integral part of the total educational program.
"School counselors work with all students to remove barriers to learning by addressing students’ academic concerns, personal/social skills and career awareness in post-secondary options,” said Kwok-Sze Wong, Ed.D., ASCA executive director, in a news release. “Comprehensive school counseling programs help to increase student achievement and provide a much-needed resource for students, parents, teachers and administrators. School counselors are integral to student success."
More than 29,000 school counselors nationwide will be participating in the week's festivities. Many school counselors will be hosting special events and activities to call attention to the myriad benefits of a comprehensive school counseling program.
Parents or community members with specific questions or concerns about school counseling programs should contact the school counselors at their local schools. More information can also be found on MESCA's website, meschoolcounselor.org , and on Maine Counseling Association website maineca.org.