ISB School Counseling Program Members

Barbara Albrechtova                                        IB Coordinator

Chelsea McGill                                                High School Careers Counselor

Jan Švihálek                                                        Head of School

Dylan Vance                                                        High School Principal

Introduction

A comprehensive school counseling program provides a framework in which the school counselor and contributing staff can follow in order to provide effective support and guidance for high school students. The program addresses a student’s academic, personal/social, and career ambitions. It aims to work with students as a whole community as well as individually and is created to help guide students through their journey towards university and on to their future careers.

The counseling program encompasses four main components; a guidance curriculum, individual planning, response services, and system support. Within each of these components a student’s academic, personal/social, and career goals are addressed and molded.

Program Philosophy, Mission, and Goals

Philosophy

The philosophy of the ISB school counseling program is that each student is unique and there are many paths that lead to success. Students should discover their own individual pathway towards university and the counseling program will guide students in the necessary steps towards their future. The program will assist students as they determine their career ambitions.

The counseling program philosophy promotes the three ISB core values of respect, hard work, and fun. The counselor will show respect towards students and expect the same in return. The school counselor will also instill a sense of work ethic in students by performing his/her duties to the fullest extent and supporting students in their steps towards graduation all the way to university acceptance. They will also demonstrate how education can be fun and that it is key to finding a career that will provide a fruitful future.

Mission

The mission of the ISB school counseling program is to support the ISB mission. This mission states “we learn and grow in unique ways to become lifelong learners and responsible global citizens”.

The counselor supports this mission by encouraging students to find their own unique path towards university as well as their future career. The counselor will support and guide students in their academic and social choices as they make their way towards becoming a successful global citizen.

Goals

The ISB school counseling program goals for the 2016-2017 school year are as follows:

1. For 100% of students in year 10 and 11 to enroll and utilize the BridgeU program

2. For 100% of students in year 10 and 11 to complete at least 1 tasks in the BridgeU program each semester (2 tasks total)

3. For 100% of students in year 10 and 11 to create a written academic and career plan by the end of the school year

4. To create, publish, and implement a comprehensive school counseling program for ISB

5. Compile data concerning IBDP, graduation, prospective universities, application process, financial aid, and deadlines and use it to create an informative careers counseling website for students, parents, and the counselor

The Four Components of a Comprehensive School Counseling Program

A comprehensive school counseling program encompasses four main components

1. Guidance Curriculum

2. Individual Planning

3. Response Service

4. System Support

Guidance Curriculum

Teach a guidance curriculum to students through workshops, group activities, and assemblies

Purpose:

To assist students in developing skills that will enhance their personal/social, academic, and career development

Counselor Role:

Personal/Social

-Provide informational sessions on various topics

-Teach respect for self and others

-Promote and teach prosocial behavior such as helping and empathy

Academic

-Teach students the knowledge and skills needed to be successful in school

-Assist students in choosing appropriate courses

-Support students through university application process

Career

-Help students understand the relationship between their education and their future career

-Investigate career opportunities as a team

-Invite industry leaders to present their careers to students        

Individual Planning

Support students in discovering their personal goals as well as in choosing future plans and the steps required to get there

Purpose:

To guide students in setting goals and making plans for their future

Counselor Role:

Personal/Social

-Assist students in discovering their talents and interests

-Assist students in setting short and long-term goals

Academic

-Help students choose appropriate courses

-Help students see the connection between education and the impact on community

-Support and guide students on their individual path towards university

Career

-Discuss career interests and opportunities

-Create an individual education and career plan

Responsive Services

Address any immediate concerns that students may have

Purpose:

To ensure students are able to meet set goals, give their best performance in school, and take the right steps to a successful future

Counselor Role:

Personal/Social

-Assist students in problem solving

-Teach self-management skills

-Teach students coping skills

Academic

-Promote good behavior and a hard work ethic

-Assist students in gaining access to immediately needed resources in order to perform their best in school

Career

-Teach students the required skills needed to be productive and successful members in the school community

System Support

Execute activities that support and maintain the counseling program

Purpose:

To ensure program accountability and success

Counselor Role:

-Provide parent education sessions

-Collaborate with teachers regarding student portfolios and university applications

-Develop and disseminate needs assessment survey

-Incorporate staff feedback in program assessments

-Counselor professional development and training

-Keep the community and PTA involved

-Discuss behavior intervention plans with teachers and administration

The Roles and Responsibilities of a Counselor

General Job Description

The high school counselor is familiar with different universities across the globe in order to best assist students in choosing the right college for them, regardless of location. The counselor must be knowledgeable about the college application process in order to assist students in applying and making them stand out as the best candidate possible.  The counselor will also assist students in choosing a college major or course of study as well as in preparing them for their future career. The counselor will invite industry leaders to school to give presentations on different career paths students may be interested in. The counselor will supply admission requirements for colleges, summer programs, and internships. The counselor helps students with general graduation preparedness; provide workshops on living alone, time management, budgeting, college life, etc. The counselor may also plan and host career and university fairs, assist students in meeting volunteer hours, and assist students in finding unique ways to meet CAS requirements.

Common duties of the counselor include giving out scholarship information to parents and students, supplying one-on-one career and college guidance, discussing test scores, providing practice college entrance exams, developing a guidance curriculum, providing students any resources they may need to meet their goals, coordinating with teachers, maintaining records, facilitating workshops and presentations. They will work with students individually, in a private setting with teachers and/or parents, or with peers in a group assembly or workshop.

Examples of Specific Tasks

Working with Students

-Build a case file for each student

-Utilize BridgeU portal to assist students in choosing a university

-Discuss BridgeU results with students

-Assist student in completing CAS projects, volunteer work, internships, etc.

-Provide as much information on universities of interest

-Course mapping, help students and parents map out DP program

-Discuss and choose which courses will be high level

-Provide individual guidance counseling plans

-Get students thinking about their futures

-Teach students how to set goals and assist students in setting goals with deadlines

-Help students create a timetable in order to meet their goals and deadlines on time

-Participate in career workshops or presentations

-Guide students on what courses to take

-Discuss career goals and provide presentations on different careers

-Counsel on college entrance exams

-Provide access to practice college entrance exams

-Research and share information about college summer programs

-Assist students in managing their time

-Workshops to help prepare students for college

-Assist CAS leader and students in making connections with community

-Assist students with college application process, scholarships, and financial aid

-Help students write 4,000 word extended essay

-Assist students with college entrance essay writing

-Host university fair for students  to attend

-Provide presentations on:

                Academic Skills

                Test Taking Skills

                How to Improve Organizational Skills

                Coping Strategies

                Transition to Adulthood

                Career Planning

                Financial Assistance  

                Stress Management

                The World of Work

                University Life

Working with Parents

-Assist administration in educating parents about the IB program

-Prepare for parent education sessions about the IB program

-Speak with parents about universities, admissions process, and financial aid

-Educate parents about BridgeU and how it works

-Share and discuss student BridgeU results with parents

-Present schools admission data from BridgeU

Working with the Community

-Invite industry leaders and parents to give career presentations to students

-Create relationships with outside businesses that will benefit students

-Work with businesses that need student interns

-Share college acceptance data from BridgeU with key stakeholders

-Help students make connections with community to meet CAS requirements

-Recruiting new families and students in the Brno international community

-Host a career fair and invite outside businesses to set up tables

Working with Universities

-Build relationships with universities

-Invite universities to give presentations at the school

-Host a university fair

-Research IB friendly universities and present to students and parents

-Research universities students are interested in

-Help set up university visits and tours

-Provide resources from universities such as informational packets and pamphlets

-Research and provide information about possible college summer programs

Working with School Staff

-Cooperate with teachers and staff on each student’s individual plan

-Assist and collaborate with IB Coordinator  

-Discuss BridgeU results with teachers and administration

-Work with staff to ensure each student is completing required hours for CAS

-Ensure school staff meets required deadlines for grade and reference letter submission

-Ensure grades are finalized, submitted, and transcripts are up to date and sent to universities in a timely manner

-Submit data to administration regarding student application outcome

Program Delivery System

Guidance Curriculum

The guidance curriculum component of the program is carried out by the counselor through group work, assemblies, workshops, group presentations, and classroom discussions. The counselor will address many topics, such as academic skills, test taking skills, coping strategies, university life, applying for financial assistance, the world of work, and career planning.

Individual Planning

The individual planning component of the program is carried out through one-on-one meetings between the student and counselor. The counselor and student will discuss personal goals, career ambitions, and universities the student is interested in. The student, with guidance from the counselor, will write out a personalized academic and career plan by the end of each school year.

Responsive Services

The responsive services aspect of the program is addressed through both group and individual meetings. The counselor will provide office hours where students can stop by to ask questions and receive assistance with any immediate needs. This can include questions regarding university applications, financial assistance, or personal issues. The counselor may also provide support for students who may feel overwhelmed by applications, tests, grades, and social life.

System Support

The system support aspect is carried out through collaboration between all stakeholders. This includes the counselor working with teachers, administration, parents, and the community to ensure students are getting the support they need. This happens through parent meetings, administrative assessments, and community involvement via internships, workshops, and hosting speakers and school fairs. The counselor is responsible for keeping data on graduation and university acceptance rates. The counselor is also responsible for keeping up to date with professional development.

Benefits of the Program

Benefits for Student

-Provides support and guidance to students academic choices

-Promotes student independence and confidence

-Assists students through the university application process

-Expands student’s views of the world and their part in it

-Helps students choose their future career

-Teaches students the necessary skills needed to be successful in society

Benefits for Parents

-Promotes relationships between the school and parents

-Assists parents in guiding students through tough academic choices

-Keeps parents informed

Benefits for Teachers

-Creates a support system for teachers in guiding students

-Assists teachers in setting deadlines for themselves and students

-Promotes collaboration between teachers and administrations

-Helps set a timeline for teachers to follow

Benefits for Administration

-Sets a guideline with measurable goals that can be assessed

-Allows the school to measure student success

-Provides data to show new, incoming families and students

Assessment

The counselor and the program will be evaluated periodically throughout the school year by the IB coordinator to ensure goals are being met and ISB standards upheld. Additional goals may be added as needed and other changes made if necessary. The program will adapt in order to best fit the needs of the school and students.

The program will also be assessed at the end of the school year. It will be evaluated by counseling program members by seeing if the measurable goals set forth at the beginning of the school year were met.

The program will also be assessed through an end of year survey given to students, parents, administration, and teachers.

Research Sources

"The South Carolina Comprehensive Developmental Guidance and Counseling Program Model." www.ed.sc.gov. South Carolina Guidance and Counseling Writing Team, Feb. 2008. Web. Aug. 2016.

"Maine Comprehensive School Counseling Program Model K-12." www1.maine.gov. Maine School Counselors In Cooperation with the Maine State Department of Education, 2006. Web. Aug. 2016.