School Counseling Programs

HCPS school counselors have a minimum of a Master’s degree in Counseling, hold a license in School Counseling PreK-12 by the Virginia Department of Education, and are uniquely trained as school-based mental health providers to deliver school counseling programs and services to support the academic achievement, social/emotional development, and college and career readiness of every student. In addition, school counselors provide mental health awareness, early identification and short-term intervention, as well as crisis and referral services to students and their families.

The school counseling program is an essential part of the total educational program, and the primary role of an HCPS’s school counselor is to deliver the following services to students:

  • School Counseling Curriculum (whole-group counseling/activities): Regularly scheduled data-informed lessons and/or activities to provide all students with the knowledge, attitudes, and skills appropriate for their developmental level. School counseling curriculum topics are preventative, psychoeducational, and driven by student need.
  • Counseling (Individual Counseling, Small Group Counseling, Crisis Counseling):
    • Developmentally appropriate, goal-focused, brief counseling sessions to individual students that address issues related to:
      • Mental Health/Wellness
      • Social/Emotional Development
      • Achievement
      • College/Career Readiness
    • Ongoing small group counseling sessions to students with similar developmental or situational challenges with the goal of improving achievement, attendance, mental health/wellness, and/or behavioral outcomes.
    • Counseling to help individual students navigate critical and emergency/crisis situations.
  • Appraisal & Advisement: Assisting students in the exploration of their abilities, interests, skills, and achievement to make decisions and develop immediate and long-range goals and plans.
  • Consultation, Collaboration and/or Referrals:

    • Providing information, insight, and recommendations to individuals or teams who can support a student’s need or seek information from an expert about student needs.
    • Working with parents, teachers, administrators, school staff, and community stakeholders to promote achievement for a specific student or to promote systemic change to address the needs of groups of students such as underachieving or underrepresented groups of students in the school.
    • Referring students to outside providers and resources as necessary.

HCPS’s school counseling programs are in alignment with the US Department of Education’s Every Student Succeeds Act, the Standards for School Counseling Programs in Virginia Public Schools, the ASCA National Model, and the American School Counselor Association’s Student Standards: Mindsets & Behaviors for Student Success.

The following HCPS School Counseling Programs currently hold the RAMP (Recognized ASCA Model Programs) designation from the American School Counseling Association:

  • Donahoe Elementary School
  • Sandston Elementary School
  • Brookland Middle School
  • John Rolfe Middle School
  • Freeman High School

For more information about HCPS School Counseling Programs, contact Liz Parker, Director of School Counseling, Student Support & Wellness