Coalition of Innovative School Districts hears about school counseling initiatives

On Wednesday morning, Kent Reed from KSDE shared information on the Kansas School Counseling Program and how it is being impacted by the new Kansans Can vision with the Kansas Coalition of Innovative School Districts at their meeting in Topeka.

Reed indicated counselors are taking on new roles in career planning and coordinating with businesses and community organizations for expanded opportunities for student growth and learning as a result of the increased focus on individual plans of study and college and career readiness.

Reed also indicated the biggest challenge is the availability of licensed school counselors. The American School Counselor Association (ASCA) recommends a ratio of one counselor for every 250 students, and the current ratio in Kansas is one to 400.  

The group discussed the shift in both counselor and teacher responsibilities, the role of the home room teachers, obtaining additional training for existing staff, sharing counseling staff across districts, licensure regulations, “grow your own” initiatives, and other related topics.

KSDE is promoting Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) through their Kansas Comprehensive School Counseling Model and the Kansas Social, Emotional, and Character Development (SECD) Standards. For more information on the Kansas SECD Standards and the school counseling program, click here.