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High School Counseling


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What Are High School Counselors?

High school counselors are educators uniquely trained in child and adolescent development, learning strategies, self-management and social skills. Middle school counselors hold a master’s degree and required state certification in school counseling. Maintaining certification includes ongoing professional development to stay current with education reform and challenges facing today’s students. 

What Do High School Counselors Do For Students?

High school counselors implement a school counseling program to support students through this important developmental period. The school counseling program provides education, prevention and intervention activities, which are integrated into all aspects of students’ lives. The program teaches students the knowledge, attitudes and skills necessary for academic, career and social/ emotional development. Delivery of the program occurs through direct and indirect student services.

Direct student services

  • instruction – teaching the school counseling curriculum to students focused through the lens of selected student standards from the ASCA Mindsets & Behaviors for Student Success.

  • appraisal and advisement – assessing student abilities, interests and achievement to help them make decisions about their future.

  • counseling – providing professional assistance and support to a student or small group of students during times of transition, heightened stress, critical change or other situations impeding student success. School counselors do not provide therapy or long-term counseling in schools. However, school counselors are prepared to recognize and respond to student mental health needs and assist students and families seeking resources.

Indirect student services

  • consultation – share strategies supporting student achievement with parents, teachers, other educators and community organizations

  • collaboration – work with other educators, parents and the community to support student achievement
  • referrals – support for students and families to school or community resources for additional assistance and information

Academic Domain at the High School Level

High School Counseling Resources

Career Domain at the High School Level

Social/Emotional Domain at the High School Level

High school counselors play a critical role in supporting social/emotional development. They collaborate with classroom teachers to provide the school counseling curriculum to all students through direct instruction, team-teaching or providing lesson plans for learning activities or units in classrooms aimed at social/ emotional development. They are trained in counseling theories that they use to inform, identify, and employ appropriate appraisal methods for individual and group interventions that support  students’ social/emotional development.


Florida CPALMS Character Education Standards