Guidance

Molly Wilcox, (908)204-2633 x107

In order to assist students in achieving the social and academic goals of our school community, counseling services are available to students, parents and staff.  Activities appropriate for students at their developmental stages of life are sequentially planned.  Assistance and information are offered for parents and staff in order to facilitate healthy growth and development in social, personal and academic realms.  

Classroom Programs

Orientation:  
The counselor will meet with each class at the beginning of the school year to introduce herself and the counseling services available. 

Developmental:  
The counselor will meet with classes to conduct age-appropriate lessons and activities based on the program modules.  Using a thematic approach, grade level modules are designed for students in grades K-5 to teach the following:

  • Identification and Expression of Feelings
  • Self-Esteem
  • Appreciation of Others
  • Conflict Resolution.

Students will bring home a lesson summary after each module’s delivery. 

Special Needs:  
Activities with a special focus may be conducted with a class if a special need is perceived.  For instance, sessions on grief can be conducted if a class is affected on loss.  

Small Group Programs

Small groups of students may meet at lunch time or another time agreed upon as least interfering with academic instruction.  Parents who wish to have their children receive such support are asked to contact the counselor. 

  • Lunch Buddies:  Students are invited by the counselor to meet informally at lunch to practice social skills, discuss friendship problems or become better acquainted.
  • Newcomers’ Lunch:  Students new to the district will be invited to meet in small groups to promote friendships and healthy adjustments.
  • Survive It:  Students who are experiencing a loss in their family through separation, divorce, or death meet to share their concerns and receive group support.
  • The Boosters:  Students explore ways to increase self-confidence, self-esteem, and friendship through helpful projects.
  • Stress Busters:  Students who are invited to participate will discover their body’s signals of stress.  Students will learn relaxation techniques, as well as problem solving strategies.  

Participation in ongoing groups requires parental permission.  Parents who wish to have their children receive such support are asked to contact the counselor.


Parent Education and Support

The counselor serves as a resource for parents who may need: 

  • Information about developmental stages or needs of their children.
  • Referral sources for in-depth family or individual counseling needs.
  • Facilitation in communication with teacher or school staff.
  • Books or reprinted articles to increase understanding of a school or family problem.

Parents may call for an appointment with the school counselor at any time.

Individual Counseling

Meeting the ongoing or critical needs of individual students is the primary focus of the counselor.  Any student may see the counselor by:

  • Requesting a visit.
  • Being referred by any staff member.
  • Being referred by a parent.
Confidentiality
Because the stories told by young children are unique, private and sensitive, students are instructed that they are confidential.  Students will be encouraged to share their feelings about their situation or group experience with their families. 

Children and parents need to know that anytime a child tells of danger to himself/herself, or others, the counselor is required to pass on that information to appropriate authorities or helping professionals. 

The counselor is ethically bound to respect the confidentiality rule, but will be happy to discuss observations and opinions about the emotional state and/or needs of the child with his/her parents.

Standardized Testing