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An infographic showing the kinds of services and support provided by school counselors.

[Image based on Watertown Elementary School Counseling Model overview.]

Direct Student Services

Individual Counseling (Short-Term/Responsive)

Individual counseling is a personal choice made in collaboration with parent, teacher and student. It reflects a short-term solution focused approach. The counselor works to help students resolve problems on their own.

  • Parents or teachers may contact a counselor to request a student be seen.
  • Students may also seek counseling support by contacting their counselor directly either through schoology or by visiting their counselor during the school day, with permission from their teacher.
  • Length and regularity of short-term counseling sessions will vary based on student need.
  • Crisis intervention support is provided when needed to assist students and their families in coping with crisis.
  • If your child needs more regular, counseling services we may refer them to our onsite CASSY (Counseling and Support Services for Youth) therapist. Additionally, if the concerns are more home-based we may encourage you to seek therapy outside of the school setting.
Counseling Groups

Each semester the counseling team runs lunch support groups. These groups help students work together around various topics including friendship, behavior, executive functioning, stress management, and more.

  • Students are referred to groups by counselors and teachers.
  • Parents of students who have been referred to a group will be contacted by one of the counselors to sign a consent to join the group.
  • Groups are run by both our school’s Professional School Counselors and CASSY therapists.
  • During the 2017-18 school year we ran 5 girls groups and 1 boys group. With the support of our CASSY counselors we also ran a stress management and social skills group.
Classroom Guidance Lessons

The school counseling team provides counseling-based lessons in classrooms around the topics of social emotional learning (SEL), career development, and academic success. A member of the team will be teaching a lesson at least once a semester in classrooms of each grade level.

  • Your student’s school counselor will teach the lesson for your student.
  • Lessons will be posted on Schoology for students who are absent.
  • Each lesson is grade level specific. Below are topics that may be covered in each grade level. Please note that topics may change based on student need.
    • 6th Grade
      • Digital Citizenship
      • Strengths/Interests
      • Peer pressure
    • 7th Grade
      • Conflict resolution
      • Resiliency
      • Personality types
      • Respect
      • Communication
    • 8th Grade
      • School Culture
      • Goal setting
      • Consent
      • Stress Management
Whole School Prevention Activities

As a counseling team, we work together to plan numerous events for the entire school to help create a safe and welcoming environment for all students. We plan different events each year for the following:

  • Not in Our Schools Week
  • Unity Day
  • Mix it Up Lunch
BETCHA Advisory Group

BETCHA is an advisory group that stands for “Be The Change.”  Students are selected by teachers to be a part of this group that works towards creating a positive culture in our school community.  The BETCHA forum meets monthly to develop school initiatives promoting respect, kindness, and inclusiveness.  In addition, the group collaborates with student council and students in the Leadership class to promote a strong JLS community.  

Mentor Program

The purpose of the Mentor Program is to connect students who struggle with academic, social and emotional challenges with a trusted adult on campus. The school counseling team arranges activities to facilitate the connection between mentors and mentees. Mentors are encouraged to connect with their mentees on a bi-weekly basis to build a meaningful relationship that is essential for the student’s development and engagement in school.  

New Student Orientation

Every new student receives a New Student Orientation to help facilitate the transition of new students to the school community.  With the support from the Leadership class, new students are introduced to the school with events and activities that help them become familiar with the campus environment and what it entails to be a JLS student.

Indirect Student Services

Counselors offer indirect student services through a variety of means.  Most prominently, counselors meet with school personnel (including teachers) regularly in an effort to promote student success.  This is an excellent forum to discuss progress and feedback in the best interest of the students’ needs. Parents may arrange a consultation with the counseling team by scheduling a requested meeting in advance.

Program Management and School Support

JLS counselors also support the school by offering programs to facilitate campus-wide goals.  For example, counselors manage social emotional learning (SEL) programs as facilitators for lessons and support for teachers and staff.