The mission of Arlington Public Schools (APS) counselors is to provide a comprehensive guidance program that will assist all students in acquiring the skills, knowledge, and attitudes needed to become effective students, responsible citizens, productive workers and lifelong learners.
The APS School Counseling Program is aligned with the school district’s five Strategic Plan Goals: 1) ensure every student is challenged and engaged; 2) eliminate achievement gaps; 3) recruit, retain, and develop high quality staff; 4) provide optimal learning environments; 5) meet the needs of the whole child. The Strategic Plan Goals are an integral part of each school’s total program with a commitment to individual uniqueness, an understanding of multicultural diversity and the maximum development of human potential.
The counseling program addresses the academic, career and personal/social needs of all students. Our ultimate goal is for students to graduate from the Arlington Public Schools system with the competencies necessary to be able to make self-directed, realistic and responsible decisions and to be successful contributors to society. This supports the school system’s goal of preparing students to live and work in a global society.
BELIEFS AND PHILOSOPHY:
The professional school counselors in APS school district believe:
- All students have dignity and worth
- All students have the right to participate in the school counseling program
- All students’ ethnic, cultural, racial, sexual differences and special needs are considered in planning and implementing the school counseling program
- All students K-12 shall have access to a full-time, state-certified, master’s degree level school counselor to deliver the counseling program
The APS comprehensive school counseling program should:
- Be based on specified goals and developmental student competencies for all students K-12
- Be planned and coordinated by school counselor(s) in collaboration with other stakeholders (school staff, parent or guardian and community representatives)
- Utilize the many combined resources of the community to deliver programs
- Collaborate with stakeholders to monitor students’ results
- Use data to drive program development and evaluation
All professional school counselors in the APS school district:
- Abide by the professional school counseling ethics as advocated by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA)
- Participate in professional development activities essential to maintain a quality school counseling program.
Adapted from the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) National Model at www.schoolcounselor.org.