High School Counselor Week

Weekly stories, facts, trends, and other information from around the country


February 17, 2022

Big Picture

The report card is in: All 50 states can do more to help schools confront youth mental health crisis
USA Today – February 16, 2022
Experts agree that schools play various key roles in stymieing the crisis. But according to the first-of-its kind ‘America’s School Mental Health Report Card,’ released Wednesday, all 50 states are failing to implement at least some of the policies that enable schools to fulfill those roles.

Oakland Is Closing Schools Due to Declining Enrollment. Other Cities Could Be Next
TIME Magazine – February 9, 2022
Education experts say it’s a sign of what’s to come as school districts nationwide contend with enrollment declines and funding challenges that have been exacerbated by the pandemic.

Congressional Bill Urges Colleges to End Legacy Admissions Boost
NBC Chicago – February 13, 2022
Ivy League students are pressing administrators to abandon the policy. Yale’s student government took a stance against the practice in November. A recent vote of Harvard students found that 60% oppose it. Hundreds of students and alumni across 30 colleges have promised to withhold financial donations over the issue. Civil rights groups are increasingly adding their support…And a bill in Congress aims to eliminate the practice.

Columns and Blogs

Umbrella, Pager, and Heart in Hand
Post – February 16, 2022
Counselors’ Corner with Patrick O’Connor, Ph.D. 

Campus Visit Tips for Parents
Post – February 16, 2022
College Advice & Timely Tips with Lee Bierer 


Pandemic Exacerbates Longstanding Counseling Crisis
International Business Times – February 13, 2022
Angel Perez, CEO of NACAC, acknowledges that the pandemic has only heightened awareness that the increasingly complex college application process continues to perpetuate social inequality. The deeper truth is that school counselors have long been undervalued despite their key roles in preparing young Americans for life after high school.

Rethinking School And Reimagining Futures
Forbes – February 10, 2022
Capital High is a school where we work to do school differently. In my comprehensive school counseling program, I work to personalize student educational opportunities by partnering with our local technical college, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, other colleges and universities, as well as local building trades and unions, youth organizations, and local businesses. Through these partnerships…

Boise School District launches program to detect if students are seeking content related to suicide
KTVB-7 (ID) – February 15, 2022
GoGuardian Beacon will notify parents, counselors and more if it detects a child is interacting with content online related to actively planning suicide.


As Pandemic Takes Toll on Students’ Mental Health, School Counselors Call For More Support
WTTW Chicago Tonight – February 13, 2022
As the pandemic continues to take a toll on kids and their mental health, getting them the support they need remains challenging. Autumn Cabell, an assistant counseling professor at DePaul University; TaRael Kee, president of the Illinois School Counselor Association; and Stephanie Miller-Henderson, a professional school counselor, join Chicago Tonight to discuss current issues and needs. (summary article included)


College admissions. Pandemic. School safety. Students say they are stressed out.
The Patriot Ledger (MA) – February 14, 2022
More than 70% of parents surveyed in a 2020 national poll conducted by the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago said the pandemic has taken a toll on their child’s mental health. Local experts and students say they’ve noticed the increase in stress and anxiety, and the feelings are caused by a number of factors.

The Metaverse and Teens’ Mental Health
Focus on the Family – February 11, 2022
So what happens as companies such as Meta invite users into evermore immersive virtual reality environments and experiences? When users can, essentially, inhabit a digital world in addition to the real one?

Admissions Process & Strategy

Social-Emotional Learning and College Readiness
The San Diego Foundation – February 14, 2022
For decades, math and reading test scores have predicted how successful a student might be in college, but educators are now taking a closer look at how social and emotional development is contributing to college success. An emphasis on SEL in secondary schools is having a positive impact on student success at the college level…

College Admission: Things That Make You Go Hmmm…
Forbes – February 14, 2022
With every new year, the landscape of college admission and application outcomes increasingly perplex me. And, I’m certainly not the only one–the students and families with whom I work, my counseling colleagues, and the general public are trying to make sense of admission decisions.

Financial Aid/Scholarships

We Continue Asking Students To Prove Their Poverty With FAFSA Verification
Forbes – February 9, 2022
Last year ED chose to reduce verifications from 18% down to 3-4%, aiming to focus only on cases of likely fraud, recognizing that the pandemic already created enough burdens for students, their families, and colleges. There was a hope that this more focused approach would continue. Instead…

How to find college scholarships for adults
Fox Business – February 15, 2022
Applying for scholarships is a rite of passage for many high school seniors looking for college funds that they won’t have to repay, like a student loan. But scholarships aren’t just for teenagers.

Career & Technical Education

When Students With High School Diplomas Earn More Than Those Who Enroll in College
U.S. News & World Report – February 15, 2022
A new analysis finds that at 30% of all colleges, more than half of students 10 years after enrollment earn less than a high school graduate.

People who shun college could collectively lose $1 trillion in lifetime earnings — but the traditional college route may not always be the best option, an expert says
Business Insider – February 13, 2022
College tuition costs remain one of the largest drivers of the drop in enrollment but Winstead also wonders whether the traditional college route will become redundant.


POV: The SAT Is Going Digital, but Is That Really the Change We Need to See?
BU Today (Boston University) – February 14, 2022
It remains to be seen if the College Board can reinvent itself in our new test-optional and test-blind reality

Use Answer Choices to Boost SAT, ACT Performance
U.S. News & World Report – February 15, 2022
Savvy test-takers have a way of using the multiple-choice answers to their advantage. Here are the five most common ways:

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Financial Aid Awareness Month

sponsored by Fastweb

February is Financial Aid Awareness Month
Tools to help your students navigate the FAFSA process and the financial aid basics

JED Mental Health Awards

sponsored by JED High School

JED’s Student Voice of Mental Health Awards: nominations open through Feb 18
Nominate your students for JED’s Student Voice of Mental Health Awards by Feb 18

Inside The Admissions Office

College Questions to Ask Your High School Counselor
Southern Utah University – February 15, 2022
Below are 15 college questions to ask your high school counselor: if they can’t answer your college questions, they will be able to point you to someone who can, and it’s a great place to start.

Teen Health

My Life is Worth Living, First Animated Series to Address Teen Mental Health, Now Available in Five Languages
Cision PR Newswire – February 10, 2022
Produced by the former ‘Rugrats’ executive Terry Thoren and the Cook Center for Human Connection, the series models positive behavior for struggling teens and the adults who support them and is available for free on YouTube

Teenage fentanyl deaths are soaring, and Black teens are hit hardest
The Philadelphia Tribune – February 11, 2022
Overdose deaths linked to synthetic opioids like fentanyl tripled among teenagers and went up five times among Black teens in the past two years, according to provisional data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. ‘The risk with fentanyl isn’t just addiction or other side effects—it’s simply death…’

More states want to restrict how LGBTQ+ people, issues are discussed in schools
The 19th News – February 9, 2022
The Human Rights Commission is especially concerned with how the bills frame restrictions on LGBTQ+ students as supporting parents’ rights — including mandating that parents should know if their child comes out at school, but not at home. ‘If a kid isn’t safe coming out at home, or they’re not sure, coming out to a guidance counselor is perhaps a significantly better idea…’


Pandemic challenging disabled students, their families and their schools
MPR News (MN) – February 15, 2022
The pandemic has been challenging for many students, but for disabled students and their families, there is an added, ongoing struggle as they work to ensure they get the services they’re legally entitled to under state and federal law, while mitigating risks of COVID exposure.

Washington is shipping more disabled students out of state
Crosscut – February 15, 2022
Disability advocates accuse state lawmakers of shortchanging special education, splitting up families and costing taxpayers millions.