School Counselors at North Thurston Public Schools
At NTPS, School Counselors emphasize:
- Social-Emotional Development: Maximize each student's individual growth and social maturity in the areas of personal management and social interaction.
- Academic Development: Maximize each student's ability to think critically and creatively, engage in their learning, access rigorous coursework, and make informed decisions.
- Career Readiness: Maximize each student's ability to understand the connection between school and work. Support planning for and making a successful transition from school to postsecondary education, career, and from job to job across their lifespan.
Counselors provide short-term small group or individual support for students expressing difficulties dealing with relationships, personal concerns, or normal developmental tasks. Counseling, comfort, and support are provided for students and families facing crisis situations. School-based crisis response is offered onsite and is timely in nature. When necessary, referrals are made to appropriate community resources. School counselors provide community referral resources to address concerns such as depression, anxiety, family difficulties, violence, abuse, and suicidal ideation.
In Washington State, a master's degree in counseling and a 400-hour internship with a certified counselor is required to become an ESA-certified school counselor. The school counselor's role in today's schools requires adherence to rigorous standards, reflected in NTPS's current policy on counseling and guidance services provided to district students.
If you’d like to look at the District Comprehensive School Counseling Program (CSCP) Plan to learn about how our school counseling program is structured, please contact the NTPS Student Support office.
Middle & High School Level
In district middle and high schools, counselors are responsible for supporting student academics, career/college readiness, and Social Emotional Learning. They are part of a team that develops needed Section 504 plans for students with disabilities. Administrators monitor the implementation of accommodations.
At the elementary level, counselors are responsible for supporting student academics, career exploration, and Social Emotional Learning. They are part of a team that develops needed Section 504 plans for students with disabilities and work with groups of students in the classroom on developing social skills, preventing harassment and bullying, and refining conflict mediation strategies. They provide daily support to students and families around their students' academic, social, emotional, behavioral, and developmental needs.