Action Plan Reflective of Schools Needs
The school counseling program offers nine targeted, age specific groups to reinforce/reteach skills so they can be successful in the classroom. The attached action plan is a comprehensive plan which provides small group counseling to meet the variety of needs of our students, including social/emotional and academic supports. The groups offered are generally divided by grade level or classes to provide support regarding specific skills and to meet the developmental needs of students. I offer groups primarily based on data, but also develop groups based on needs from student success team meetings or multiple concerns over the year.
To organize groups, I utilize both perception and outcome data to identify students and direct them to a specific group. Every quarter, teachers report on student behavior in the “work habits and social skills” section of the report card. This is their perception of how their student is doing in their classroom. Students who receive multiple “N’s” (Needs Improvement) get filtered as possible group candidates. Office discipline referrals are also a factor that is used for groups. For academics, I review quarterly math and reading scores to see which students need more support and connect an appropriate group for their support.
The main topics covered in groups include Social Skills (Based on Boystown Curriculum), Impulse control, Study Skills (Based on AVID) and Student Success Skills. All groups are aligned with the ASCA Mindsets and behaviors. Lessons are driven by the Mindsets & Behaviors standards to drive the learning in each session. These groups also support our program goals in improving math and reducing chronic absenteeism by removing barriers to learning and building skills that will make them successful.
The "Skits are a Hoot for Little Toots" (Little toots) group is spotlighted in this section. As mentioned in the core curriculum results report, this cohort of students was one of the most highly referred groups in the school. Reviewing the data, I identified 5 students who could benefit from social skills lessons. I chose the skits for it to be more engaging and interactive for the students. The curriculum is based on the widely used Boystown Curriculum, which breaks down social skills in to three to five simple steps. Each day students would review a skill that was an area of concern identified both by the data and teachers. They would perform a skit using a reader's theatre technique and debrief application of the skill in the session.
Mindsets and Behavior integrated within the lesson.
Content in each small group is driven by the selected ASCA Mindsets & Behaviors. In the “Little Toots” group, the standards were selected intentionally to help students to develop: positive and supportive relationships (BS:SS:2), discipline and self-control (B.SMS.2), and assuming responsibility (B.SMS.1) All lessons used in the small group (Respect, Impulse control, Responsibility...etc.) were selected to support the Mindsets & Behaviors standards. To evaluate the learning of these standards, the collection of perception data is driven by language aligned by the Mindsets & Behaviors. For example, I asked questions like: “I believe that at school teachers, and other grown-ups care about me” assessing supporting relationships (BS:SS:2); “I believe it is important to stop and think about my actions before doing them” supporting attitudes around self-control (B.SMS.2); and “Your teacher asked for a volunteer to help her with the class activity. You raised your hand, but she did not pick you. What are the best things to do?” gauging the student’s knowledge of making responsible choices (B.SMS.1). Pre/post-test questions evaluate the change in attitudes, knowledge and skills that were developed during group time.
Results Reports informing future Activities
Implications for the results report provides a critical link for success and provide reflection for improvement. Integral is a cogent rationale for the recommendations. In the “little toots” group, one recommendation was to review aligning the reading level of the curriculum with the level of students in the group. Because students have varying reading levels it is important to take that in to consideration with the topics and activities of the group. In reflection, one area of improvement, especially in supporting behavior, is reinforcing the norms and getting buy-in from students. Doing a pre/post meeting with students may be helpful to support buy-in. Finally, in terms of continuation of the group and the overall success, I believe with the over-all success with improved perception of teachers and the improvement in behavior I would recommend utilizing the group again keeping in mind the recommendations above.