Counselor

  • The Developmental Needs of the Elementary Student: 

    Elementary school years are the years when students develop attitudes concerning school, self, peers, social groups, and family. It is a time when students develop decision-making skills, communication and life skills, and character values.
     
    Comprehensive developmental counseling services offered at the elementary education level is proactive. The goal is teaching students a variety of skills integrated into all aspects of their lives. Early identification and intervention of children's problems are essential to change some of the current statistics regarding destructive behaviors. If we wait until children are in middle or high school to address these problems, we lose the opportunity to help them achieve their potential, as well as feelings of dignity and self-worth. For many children, the school counselor may be the one person who provides an atmosphere of safety, trust and positive regard as well as assisting them in taking ownership of their own words and actions.

    Elementary school years set the tone for developing the skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary for our children to become healthy, productive, and respectful adults who have a strong sense of belonging and become a contributing member of their society. With a comprehensive developmental counseling program, the counselors at Morningside work as a team with school, parents, and community to create a caring atmosphere whereby children's needs are met through prevention, early identification and interventions necessary for all and every child depending on their individual needs.

  • The Morningside Counselor:


    • Implements effective classroom guidance focusing on understanding self and others; coping strategies; peer relationships and effective social skills; communication, problem-solving, decision-making, conflict resolution, and study skills; career awareness and the world of work; substance education; and multicultural awareness.
    • Provides individual and small group counseling dealing with self-image and self-esteem; personal adjustment; family issues; interpersonal concerns; academic development; behavior modification; as well as peer facilitation and peer mediation.
    • Works with populations with needs that require special attention, such as culturally diverse populations and students of varying abilities.
    • Develops students' career awareness as a lifelong process of forming basic values, attitudes and interests that bridge the gap between basic skills and future careers.
    • Coordinates school, community and business resources; school wide guidance-related activities; and extracurricular programs which promote students' personal growth and skill development.
    • Provides consultation with teachers, administrators, school psychologists, school social workers, and outside agencies and social services concerning the welfare of the students.
    • Communicates and exchange information with parents/guardians by way of individual conferences, through participating in parent workshops, and our school’s Digital Newsletter.
    • Makes appropriate referrals for special services for students and families within the school and community.
    • Participates as members of the school improvement team, interdisciplinary teams and leadership team.
    • Takes the role of the SEL (Social Emotional Learning) liaison between APS and teachers in implementing the program.

     

    02/28/18 Second Step Program: Child Protection Unit

    Keeping our children safe and away from different dangerous situations is the number one priority of parents and educators. Unfortunately, some of these dangerous situations may cause visible bodily harm to our children where some other dangerous situations cannot be easily detected! While we all are working hard on keeping our children safe every day and every minute, let’s pay attention to and try our best to prevent both: visible and invisible harms to our children. I believe that prevention is always a wider choice than intervention!
     
    In order to protect our children from hard to detect harms, I am excited to tell you about the Child Protection Unit (CPU) which is another component of the “Second Step Program” initiated by APS’ superintendent with the goal of keeping our kids safe. This is an important program that is grade-level appropriate and its’ goal is to educate and empower our students in all grade levels to be able to recognize, report, and refuse any possible physical harm.
     
    Soon, you will receive a parent letter that includes the “Second Step” website and a grade-level specific code that allows you to preview the Child Protection Unit (CPU) curriculum. This will be an opt-out letter that you will need to sign and send to school if you choose your child NOT to be present when the CPU is being taught.
     
    Please feel free to contact me with your questions and comments. Classes are scheduled to start at end of March and after Spring Break. Our teachers have had extensive training to prepare them to teach this unit.
    Thanks and have a great day! - Aazam Salehi, Morningside Professional School Counselor

    MES School Counselor: Aazam Salehi