As a former public school teacher, current education professor, and parent of two daughters in our public schools, I have come to have a few realizations about school counselors. Here is what they do:
According to ASCA, "School counselors are certified/licensed educators with a minimum of a master's degree in school counseling, making them uniquely qualified to address all students' academic, career, and social/emotional development needs by designing, implementing, evaluating, and enhancing a comprehensive school counseling program that promotes and enhances student success."
This is a draft.
As a professional educator, it has come to my attention through practice and study that our education system is in a bad state. Before you get irate, this isn't about teachers. This isn't about schools. This isn't about administrators. And, yet, it is. This is about testing.
Testing has become the end all of education. According to a student by the American Federation of Teachers (2013), student can spend from 20-50 hours testing per year in some grades. In addition, another 60-110 hours are spent on test preparation. And that is not the worst of it.
Because districts, schools, administrators, and teachers a judged on the test scores, these assessments become the sole focus of the education system. Critical and creative thought are smothered by bubble sheets and short answered responses.
As a school board member, I would work to make tests less important. Let our schools be celebrated for creating stimulating learning environments, implementing innovative ideas, and promoting critical thinking and creative endeavors. Let the schools of Columbia County be know for helping students become successful in life and not just successful on tests.
Did you know that according to the Governance in Accountability Era booklet about school boards, it notes that only about 27% of school board members are educators. My own research (from my Master's degree) found that being an educator includes things like being a teacher, and administrator, a substitute, or the president of the PTO.
As an educator, I would bring my experience and knowledge about education to Columbia County. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me on my Facebook page or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Democracy isn't easy. Democracy requires work. As a member of a democracy, you must stay informed on both sides of an issue. Most importantly, you should be active. I am not speaking about just voting, although this is important. I mean that we should all be a part of the conversation.
And that is why I am working on being on the Columbia County School Board. I want to make a difference.
With the exception of a year, I have been a teacher or a student for my entire life. I have taught on many different levels. I have been a middle school teacher (okay, for one semester for student teaching...because of this, I have a profound respect for middle school teachers), high school, undergraduates and graduate students. I have coached soccer in youth leagues and high school. Education is in my blood.