The Clara Byrd Baker Guidance and Counseling Program
Guidance and counseling at Baker is the first step in the school division’s Comprehensive K-12 Guidance and Counseling Program. The program is organized to enhance the development of academic, career, and personal/social skills of each student. Goals for students include:
- Interpersonal effectiveness
- Communication skills
- Responsible Behavior
- Decision making & problem solving skills
- Motivation & persistence to achieve
- Student and work place skills
- Career awareness
The school counselor works to help students achieve these goals in a number of ways.
Classroom Guidance: Each classroom receives 9 lessons per year. The counselor visits the classroom once a month. Lessons address good student skills, career awareness, appropriate feeling expression, conflict resolution, dealing with bullies, making good decisions, and life transitions. The lessons are developmentally appropriate and skills are built over the six years of elementary school.
Small Groups: Small groups are designed to provide an opportunity for students to discuss a common issue and practice skills in a comfortable environment. Groups meet once a week for 6-8 weeks for 30 -45 minutes in the counselor’s office. Students may be referred by parents, teachers, or themselves. Parent permission is always obtained. The types of groups include: friendship, positive thinkers, changing family, feelings management, grief and loss, military kids, school success, and cooperative kids.
Individual counseling: Students are seen individually to mediate conflicts (may include peers), discuss problems or concerns, or address behavioral issues. Students may be seen up to 3 times before a parent is called. Of course the counselor may use her discretion to call the parent at any time to seek the parents help and support. Many of the issues, for example, “a peer called me a name” can be resolved with more independence by the student. Students may be referred by the teacher, administrator, parent or self. Any on-going counseling requires parent permission.
Consultation: The counselor is always available to consult with parents, teachers, and administrators to problem solve and make recommendations how to best support the student.
Individual Planning: New students are met with to introduce them to the school with a review of school rules and a tour of the school. They are given a small gift and their pictures are taken for the newcomer board. Each fifth grader is given an exit interview in the fourth quarter as a closure experience for elementary school. The students test scores and grades are reviewed and the student sets goals for middle school.
You can contact our school counselor, Mrs. Szczypinski, by phone at 221-0949 and select 3, or by email at Virginia.firstname.lastname@example.org