Thursday, March 1, 2012

School Counseling: One of the 'Best Jobs' of 2012

Our secret is out, school counselors.  There is no use trying to keep it to ourselves anymore.  What we've known for years has become public knowledge. 

School counseling is one of US News and World Report's 'Best Jobs' for 2012.  In fact, we rank #17 out of the top 25.  According to the publication:
"Those who provide academic, personal, and developmental support to school-age children and young adults now prefer the tag 'school counselor.' Even that generic description doesn't fully capture the duties of the profession." (source: money.usnews.com)
The article goes on to say the number of school counseling positions is expected to grow by 19% by 2020.  The part of the article that resonated most, in my mind, was a section where they interviewed Gail Smith, a school counseling director in Georgia:
"'You never know when a child walks into your door what type of issues they're bringing with them—what issues might be a barrier of learning for them.' For that reason, a counselor's stress level can vary day to day. At times, in fact, the job can be very intense, particularly as most school counselors consider their profession a calling and feel emotionally invested in the students they see. 'Counselors aren't taking home papers to grade,' says Smith, 'but they are taking home the kids in their hearts.'" (source: money.usnews.com)
It's true--we typically do not take papers home to grade, but we do take home the emotions from the tough situations that we run across on a daily basis.  Further, many of us are working overtime to plan lessons and groups as well as get information out to stakeholders, whether that's news about bullying or resources for post-secondary planning.  We know that what we do is significant and important, but it is always good to have that validation from the outside.

I would recommend sharing this news with your colleagues as well as the stakeholders in your school community--teachers, parents, students, and administrators.  Click here for the full article.   

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