Why We Honor School Counselors

We share the many great ways that school counselors assist students, such as hosting admissions events, and what you can do to show your appreciation, such as writing a thank you note or dropping by their office.
A school counselor speaking with students

As we celebrate National School Counseling Week, I am reminded of the abundance of support our school counselors offer to students and parents across the Commonwealth. I have the pleasure of working with high school guidance departments throughout Massachusetts, and it never ceases to amaze me how diligent, determined, and tirelessly these educators work. Whether it's helping a student choose high school coursework aimed towards a nursing program, or offering up options to the student who wants to pursue a vocational career, our counselors are there to provide direction and support.

For many families in Massachusetts, the students are first-generation college candidates, so it's essential that assistance is available and families have opportunities to receive guidance and ask questions. Great examples of this support are the events hosted by school counselors and their high schools for grade 11 students and their parents that provide the details of the college admissions process. I once co-presented at an event of this type with school counselor Karen Baker O'Brien at Tewksbury Memorial High School. Karen hosted a breakfast symposium for grade 11 parents to discuss the importance of staying organized, keeping the steps of the application process in mind, alleviating fears, and remembering that there is a path for everyone. At the start of the event, I could see numerous faces looking overwhelmed, but by the end, there was a sense of calm and a notion of, "we can do this." What became obvious to all attendees was that the guidance department is always available to answer questions and help each student with post-secondary planning no matter their path.

If you're a parent of a high school student, I encourage you to take a few moments to thank your school counselors. Even a short thank you note with an acknowledgement of their hard work and support can mean a lot. And certainty a quick drop-by with your son or daughter to say thank you also makes an impact. Let's give a round of applause as best we can for those individuals working tirelessly to support the well-being and success of all of our students.