The tier 2 small group counseling interventions, as outlined in the Small Group Action Plan, were developed based on review of data sources and established as key strategies for program goals. Data was collected and reviewed from outcome sources (report card, standardized testing results, attendance, and office behavior referral data: see artifacts in program goals and CCAP sections). These data sources showed needs for several different types of groups, for example, emotion and anger management and impulse control groups due to high level of referrals for defiance and disruption and academic skills groups due to low levels (approximately 30% in grades 3-5) of students testing at grade level in state standardized testing. Similarly, process data, such as enrollment, showed each grade enrolling several new students, some having been very transient in their elementary years, so a new student group was established to support that transition.
Stakeholder perceptions (staff and guardian needs assessment, see artifact in program goals section) were considered. For example, results from the staff and family/guardian survey showed a high need for friendship skills at a tier 2 level. Further, teacher and guardian referrals received throughout the year demonstrated a need for some of these topics, for example, the relational aggression group for 5th grade girls and anxiety management.
Several groups were key strategies for school counseling program goals, such as attendance, emotion management, anger management, and impulse control. Students for all groups were chosen based on their identified need and fit to the above groups, based on data. For example, students for the relational aggression group had 2 or more office behavior referrals for fighting and identified by teacher referral as having difficulty with peer relationships.
The submitted small group example was an Attendance small group. As outlined in the artifact labeled, “5th Grade Attendance SGRR (REVISED),” the submitted group lesson plans was an attendance group comprised of six 5th grade students (4F, 2M), 4 students were black, 2 were white, who had 10 or more absences from 4th grade year. The group met over student lunch period, approximately 25 minutes, for 7 weeks. Each lesson, when developed, was cross-checked with and referenced for alignment with matched ASCA Mindset 5 & Behaviors learning strategies 3 and self-management skills 5. Lesson topics surrounded student sense of belonging at school and understanding the impacts of successful attendance (establishing confidence and motivation towards establishing and persevering towards an attendance goal) and skills to help them ultimately set a long-term attendance goal (strategies such as time management, problem solving, and goal setting).
When looking at the outcome data from this group, I pulled attendance data several months after completion of the group to look at the full school year impact and outcomes for students. I was elated to find, and described in the implications section, that the long term outcomes were positive, suggesting that student recall and implementation of the taught mindsets & behaviors were high. I will continue this group with appropriate edits based on next group’s unique needs. In the future, I will also dig further into additional outcome data sources, including spring standardized testing scores and report card data to analyze improve attendance implications on academic progress.
The area in need of several modifications and improvement is within the perception data and information collected from students that better match the established mindsets and behaviors. As mentioned in the implication section, after completion and reflection of this group, student assessment questions are going to be altered to better align with the intent and goals of group lessons and target Mindsets & Behaviors as I recognized too much weight was emphasized in student awareness of attendance impacts and outcomes and less on their confidence and beliefs around their abilities to achieve successful attendance. One specific example, the revised assessment will ask, “I use time management strategies to help me get to school everyday on time,” and "I believe if I make an attendance goal, I can achieve it,” with Yes/No student response options. This will better align with MS&B’s and allow for a “cleaner” resulting data story.
*"5th Grade Attendance SCRR (REVISED)" should read SGRR, not SCRR
*"LESSON #__: SPMA Attendance SC Lesson Template" should read SG not SC