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What Is The Role Of An OTHS School Counselor

School Counselors at OTHS:

  • Hold, at minimum, a master’s degree in school counseling.
  • Are licensed by the Illinois State Board of Education.
  • Fulfill continuing education requirements.
  • Uphold the American School Counseling Association ethical and professional standards.

Academic Planning & Course Selection

  • OTHS school counselors begin the process of academic planning & course selection starting in the student’s 8th grade year. 
  • For rising 10th, 11th and 12th graders, course selection and registration takes place between the months of October to February. The school counselors are experienced in using their knowledge about their students’ strengths, interests, and goals to develop an individualized schedule of courses for each year of high school. Our goal is to help students meet with success in courses that are both academically challenging and personally manageable.
  • The process of academic planning & course selection takes into account the review of academic data such as report cards, progress reports, transcripts and interpreting student evaluations such as academic achievement tests, diagnostic assessments, ACT, SAT, PSAT to identify students in need of remediation and academic assistance.

Provide Academic Support

  • When meeting with students who are struggling with their school work, OTHS school counselors can bridge the gap between students, parents, and teachers, helping all parties to identify the root of the problem and come up with alternatives as necessary.
  • School counselors can also help to create an environment that fosters academic integrity and teaches students how to develop skills such as organization, time management, and effective study habits that they can take with them throughout their academic endeavors.

College and Career Planning

  • School counselors help students set realistic academic and career goals and develop a plan to achieve them.
  • School counselors evaluate students’ abilities and interests through aptitude assessments and interviews as well as present on topics such as planning for college or careers after graduation.

Preparing Students for Life after High School

  • OTHS school counselors have many important roles, but perhaps most important is providing students with information so that they can plan for their life after OTHS, whether it be college, trade school, or entering the working world. 
  • Regardless of the path students choose, school counselors provide a critical role in helping students transition into their next life stage, from hosting college and career fairs to helping students fill out college applications, or simply listening to their struggles during this time.

Providing Parental Support

  • OTHS School Counselors can also help parents navigate other difficult processes, including the college application process, providing training for parents on how to fill out the FAFSA, or even how to access further counseling for their children.
  • School counselors can also provide referrals for students and parents to resources both iniside and outside the school for additional support.