The counselors at HMS would like to welcome you to our webpage! As you know, middle school is a time for exploration, growth and development and we are here to help you navigate this journey. We have the opportunity to work with students in a variety of ways including individual and small group counseling, classroom guidance lessons, and other counseling related activities throughout the school year. We also have the opportunity to work with parents, faculty and community members. The underlying goal of each of our programs is to help our students and their families have a growth filled year. We support endeavors that help students achieve and succeed.
As a result of working with such wonderful students, parents, teachers, administrators, and support staff, we received a 2016 RAVE Bronze Award, 2017 RAVE Silver Award, and 2018 RAVE Gold Award! The Recognition of Accountability Verification and Excellence (RAVE) Award is a continuous improvement document that gives a school counseling program an opportunity to demonstrate effective communication and a commitment to implementing an outcome-based, data-driven program. This award has been developed by an advisory group of Alabama school counselors, counselor educators, system/district supervisors, and the Alabama Department of Education. We are very honored and proud of this achievement.
In 2019, we were in the first group of school counseling programs to earn the designation of Alabama School Counseling Program of Distinction. The Alabama School Counseling Program of Distinction recognizes school counseling programs that demonstrate an exemplary level of implementation of a comprehensive, data-driven school counseling program. We subsequently earned RAMP (Recognized ASCA Model Program) designation from the American School Counselor Association in 2020. This is the highest national recognition for a school counseling program.
We are so fortunate to have parents in Homewood who are involved in their child's lives because parental involvement makes a tremendous difference in school success. We look forward to getting to know you and your children. Please know that we value your input. If you ever have any questions, need additional information regarding one of our programs or want to schedule an appointment, please don't hesitate to contact us either by email or by calling the school (205.870.0878). It is our privilege to serve you and help our students attain their maximum potential in their personal/social, educational, and career development. We look forward to an exciting, successful year!
I. The Role of the Counselor
The following description comes from the Alabama Comprehensive Counseling and Guidance State Model for Public Schools:
During the middle school grades, counselors' concerns shift to the changing needs of the young adolescent. Middle school counselors focus on helping students establish, identify, and balance academic, career, and personal/social goals. Efforts begun in elementary school are continued and expanded, although an emphasis is placed on the transition into high school. In addition, middle school counselors help integrate knowledge of student interests, aptitude, and academic skills into the formation of a high school four-year educational plan and educational/career planning portfolio for high school and beyond.
Some of the services we provide through our comprehensive school counseling program at HMS are:
- Orienting students and parents to the middle school environment
- Providing classroom guidance lessons to educate and increase student awareness
- Conducting individual sessions with students
- Coordinating and facilitating small student groups
- Analyzing test results and assisting students and parents in making educational decisions such as course selection and participation in programs such as Duke TIP (7th grade)
- Encouraging students to become active participants in their school
- Educating students on how to make positive decisions
- Working with HSSP (Homewood Student Success Plan) and CAP (Classroom Accommodation Plan)
- Scheduling parent conferences and working cooperatively with parents, teachers, and administrators to help children succeed
- Identifying student needs through communication with teachers, parents, and administrators
- Educating faculty on standardized testing
As school counselors, we will respect the rights of confidentiality of personal information disclosed during the course of conversation between ourselves and students except in the following situations: (1) Student presents danger to him/herself, (2) Student presents danger to others, (3) Student has been abused by others, (4) Student needs hospitalization, (5) if we are required to do so by court order. We are bound by federal and state law to break confidentiality in the event of any of the above mentioned situations and will do so to protect our students and remain legally and ethically true to our profession.
III. Counselor Standards
Essential elements to help students achieve success in school are facilitated by the guidance program in three general domains:
Each domain has specific standards and multiple competencies which are addressed through a comprehensive counseling and guidance program.