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Regents Approve Initiative To Improve School Counselor Training

Atlanta — June 10, 2003

The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia approved the Principles for the Preparation of School Counselors today, the final section of the board’s principles designed to improve Georgia’s schools by setting standards for the preparation of educators who can ensure the academic success of every child.

The principles are an important step toward the University System’s goal of “Creating a More Educated Georgia.”

“The Board of Regents’ approval of the principles is the third cornerstone of the University System’s efforts to strengthen educator preparation,” said Jan Kettlewell, associate vice chancellor for P-16 initiatives. “As a result of the regents’ action, school counselors prepared in the University System of Georgia will be prepared to enter Georgia’s schools ready to help every child achieve academic success.”

In 1998 and 2001, respectively, the Regents approved Principles for the Preparation of Teachers and Principles for the Preparation of Educational Leaders (school principals and superintendents). All sections of the principles — now including school counselors — are based on three themes: quality assurance, collaboration, and responsiveness.

School counselors largely are responsible for the social, emotional, and career development necessary for students’ academic success. They play a critical role in advising students about the courses needed for acceptance into college — commonly known as the College Preparatory Curriculum (CPC). For example, research with African-American males in Georgia has shown that a key contributor to their low college-going rates is insufficient counseling about the appropriate pre-requisite and academically rigorous courses to take.

A unique feature of the principles is the University System’s guarantee that any school counselor it prepares will be able to promote the academic success, career preparedness and social/emotional development of all students. Backing up the guarantee, the Board of Regents will provide additional training to any counselor who has completed an approved program in the previous four years and does not meet expectations. This training will be provided at no expense to the counselor or to the school.

“The Principles and Actions for the Preparation of School Counselors shows that Georgia is committed to enhancing the academic success of all students,” said Brent Snow, Ph.D., department chair of the State University of West Georgia’s College of Education. “School counselors are absolutely critical as leaders and advocates for Georgia students.”

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