The Role of the School Counselor
This month we celebrate National School Counseling Week. We’re highlighting the ways our team of credentialed school counselors helps students forge an academic path to help them achieve their dreams!
Full-time students at Laurel Springs have the opportunity to work with a certified counselor from the very first day they enroll, all the way through graduation.
Each student's path is fashioned with their academic success at the forefront, created with a student's interests and goals at the heart of it all. This path is meaningful every step of the way, and even more so for students in the upper grades, whose current academic experience will springboard them into their postgraduate pursuits. Sometimes those pursuits include attending a college or university. Other times, it's a purpose-filled gap year, vocational training, or jumping immediately into the workforce.
Whatever post-Laurel Springs experience a student envisions, it's a path they've been preparing for with the help of their counselor.
Your Student's Path is Their Own
Laurel Springs students work with counselors who support them holistically as they move from one grade level to the next. A relationship-based approach to counseling allows for the development of comprehensive academic plans meeting students' needs throughout their K–12 progression and, ultimately, support their achievement of post-graduate goals.
Laurel Springs counselors boast more than 150 years of experience in school counseling and are 100% focused on setting students up for academic and personal success and goal achievement from the day they are enrolled.
We are a very experienced team of School Counselors that are available to provide academic, social/emotional, career, and college guidance," says Deena Paradiso, M.Ed., counseling manager.
Academic Plans Align With Goals For Education....and Beyond!
When students and their families are exploring whether Laurel Springs is a good fit for their needs, they work with Admissions Coordinators and Placement Counselors to obtain and review prior academic information to begin creating an academic schedule. If your child has post-secondary goals that include NCAA certification or enrollment at a specific institution of higher education, those trajectories are considered as schedules are created.
Here are a few student and alumni highlights showing the unique ways Laurel Springs students pursue their goals while balancing an asynchronous learning schedule—thanks to the collaboration of counselors, teachers, students, and families to create an academic plan to meet their needs and desired outcomes:
Entrepreneur Deya Aliaga Kuhnle says switching to Laurel Springs from homeschooling made a difference in her trajectory. "I liked having structure, feedback from teachers, and knowing that I had an accredited school backing me as I began applying to college,” Deya says. “I thought all my teachers and my college counselor were so supportive and so nice; I could really tell they took the time to help me—they weren’t just trying to move on to the next student.”
Published author McKenzie Holmes credits the Laurel Springs environment, including her coursework and her involvement in student government, with overcoming shyness and helping her develop leadership skills that continue to serve her even beyond her college years as a world traveler and policy expert. "It kind of forced me out of my comfort zone to hop on the microphone in iClasses,” McKenzie says. “If it was in a physical environment, I never would’ve gotten up in front of the classroom to speak. I think Laurel Springs probably fit well for me in a way that somewhere else would not have.”
Current student William Flaherty has maintained straight A's during his years as a Laurel Springs student, even as he battled chronic illness and prepared to compete in the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
School Counselor Interactions Guide Students Toward Success
Laurel Springs counselors help students become and remain prepared and productive in their online environment—knowledge that will serve them during their K-12 years and beyond. With a focus on goal-setting, decision-making, and self-advocacy, our counselors empower students to develop and enhance the academic and social skills that align with their academic progression. In a world where information and resources are simply a keystroke away, students learn to navigate the resources—and opportunities!—that best reinforce and support the outcomes they are looking for.
Our counselors offer a number of opportunities in the online environment to help students recognize their needs, identify their goals and create a plan to help them reach those goals through opportunities and resources. Whether it's a webinar on the college admissions process, a one-on-one counselor-led meeting, a seminar, or an annual meeting to map out the next school year, our counselors help students establish objectives and relationships for their immediate and future ambitions.
Our counselors equip students with grade-level specific resources and counseling sessions to prepare them for future school, career, and college plans. Our counseling team keeps an open dialogue with students, families, peers, and industry leaders on how to improve counseling services and activities.
Exploring students’ progression and outcomes, our counselors actively look for areas of success and for improvement in their services and relationships. The counseling department partners with students and families to assess where a student is and offer opportunities and resources to help them get where they need and want to be.
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