The most formative school years are during the elementary grades. Children build a foundation for lifelong learning, self-awareness, and interpersonal skills. As children progress through elementary school, they move from childhood to preteen stages, changing from being self-focused to developing an awareness of others. They begin learning how to cooperate, solve problems, develop responsibility, and form friendships. The elementary school counselor is trained in understanding child development and in offering comprehensive programs to enhance success at school.
Guidance activities are conducted on a regular and planned basis for all students throughout the year. The curriculum includes study skills, social skills, conflict resolution, decision-making, personal responsibility, coping abilities and drug prevention education. Throughout the elementary years, some children need additional assistance for specific concerns. Counselors offer both individual and small group counseling. Counseling sessions give students the opportunity to discuss problems, learn new skills, consider alternatives and consequences, and take responsibility for their choices. Counselors may also refer families to outside resources.
Elementary programs include student observations, assessments, intervention plans, parenting education, teacher and parent consultations, crisis management and follow-up. Counseling services are delivered through collaboration among students, parents, teachers, and administrators. School counselors are advocates for children. The goal is for every student to reach his or her educational, personal and social potential. Parents have the right to refuse counseling services for their child. If parents do not want their child to access counseling services, they simply need to write a letter or stop by the school to sign a form that indicates that preference. Refusing counseling services will not exclude students from meeting with a counselor for concerns about scheduling academics, college / career advising or the classroom curricular components.
Respect the inherent rights and responsibilities of parents;
Respect the relationship with the student; and
Endeavor to establish a cooperative relationship with both parent and student.
The privacy rights of students must be respected. However, counselors shall inform parents of information that may jeopardize the health, safety and welfare of the student. Such information will be shared with parents even if the student objects to the disclosure. If parents have any concern regarding confidentiality or any counseling services, they are encouraged to contact their child’s counselor.
Psychologists / Social Workers
Academy District 20 provides itinerant staff members who are shared among schools. The psychologists and social workers help both regular education and special education students and their parents as needed.
Reading Support and Interventions
ATE has a Reading Specialist dedicated to providing students who are reading below grade level expectations with appropriate reading interventions. Services focus on the Five Components of Reading and interventions are targeted to specific student needs. Student needs are met through small group pull-out interventions and through support in the classroom.
The Special Education Resource Teacher provides specifically designed instruction to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability. Specially designed instruction means adapting, as appropriate to the needs of a child with a disability, the content, methodology, or delivery of instruction to address the unique needs of the child that result from the child's disability and to ensure access of the child to the general curriculum so that the child can meet the educational standards.
The Speech/Language Pathologist provides evaluation and appropriate intervention and/or consultation services to students experiencing delayed or disordered communication skills that interfere with academic or social achievement. Specific speech/language needs could include: speech/articulation, receptive and/or expressive language, voice, fluency, and auditory processing.
Talented and Gifted Education
ATE has a TAG teacher that provides extension classes for those students that classroom teachers feel need additional challenge in grades 3-5. The TAG teacher supports teachers by providing information on differentiation strategies and techniques that can be tailored to the needs of their students.
Student Intervention Team
The student intervention team provides a problem-solving approach within the MTSS (Multi-Tiered System of Supports) process to support students' academic and/or behavior needs. The team representatives are a variety of educational staff including teachers, specialists, administrators, parents, and students, when deemed appropriate. The team analyzes data and monitors progress of interventions in place, and makes adjustments when necessary.