High School Counselor Week

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


May 26, 2022

Big Picture

How to talk to kids after 19 children, 2 adults killed in Texas school shooting
ABC News – May 25, 2022
In the wake of the deadly mass shooting, many parents are left grappling with how to explain the horrific act of gun violence — at a setting where most kids spend a majority of their days — to their children and teens.

This school year never got back to ‘normal.’ These are the lessons educators will carry with them.
Chalkbeat – May 19, 2022
The year marked a return to fully in-person learning for most, but COVID waves, staff shortages, and a sharp rise in student absenteeism meant the school year never quite got back to ‘normal.’ Now, many exhausted teachers and students are counting down the days to summer — while thinking about how the lessons of this year will shape the next one.

Columns and Blogs

Brag Colleges and More: The Year in Review
Post – May 24, 2022
Counselors’ Corner with Patrick O’Connor, Ph.D.

Finding Scholarships to Pay for College
Post – May 24, 2022
College Advice & Timely Tips with Lee Bierer


Reflections from America’s litany of school shootings: What to say, what to do
Chalkbeat – May 24, 2022
Many Americans’ first thought after learning of Tuesday’s school shooting that left 19 students and at least one teacher dead was likely ‘not again.’ Other thoughts probably followed: How will I explain this to the young people in my life? How can my school respond and help students process this tragedy? Could it happen here? Here, we have compiled a list — sadly long — of stories produced over the years in the aftermath of school shootings. While the circumstances of these incidents differ, each features insights from educators, students, and others grappling with terrible loss.

School counselors sound cry for help after Buffalo shooting
Los Angeles Times – May 23, 2022
Every school, it seems, has a moment that crystallizes the crisis facing America’s youth and the pressure it is putting on educators. For many schools, last weekend’s shooting rampage in Buffalo, carried out by an 18-year-old who had been flagged for making a threatening comment at his high school last year, prompted staff discussions on how they might respond differently.

Rural students of color are fighting back against racism in majority white schools
NPR (LISTEN) – May 24, 2022
The racism at this high school isn’t isolated. Recent data shows about a quarter of all students, ages 12 to 18, saw hate words or symbols written in their schools – things like homophobic slurs and references to lynching. At West County High, after a racist prom proposal went public, Principal Shauna Ferdinandson’s office phones began ringing off the wall from people throughout the community. Senior Dylan Pena Perez calls it normalized racism, and he says teachers aren’t trained to step in, so they contribute to the problem.

North Thurston Public Schools Strengthens Support for Mental Wellness Among Students
Thurston Talk (WA) – May 24, 2022
The month of May has served as a special opportunity to engage with students and lift their voices around this critical topic. NTPS has a growing number of programs in place to support the social and emotional well-being of its students. Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) curricula at both elementary and secondary levels have been foundational in supporting students during the pandemic era. Last year, a 24/7 Crisis Clinic hotline was established and widely promoted among the community in conjunction with free suicide prevention classes the district offered for students and their families. School counselors at every level have redoubled their efforts to connect with students and ensure they have the resources and support they need. The district also has…


How To Support The Mental Health Of LGBTQ+ Kids In Your Life Right Now, According To Experts
Forbes – May 23, 2022
Approximately 8% of high school students in the U.S. identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual, according to the CDC, and 0.7% of youth identify as transgender. This means that most adults are likely to know at least one young person who identifies as LGBTQ+. Perhaps this makes you nervous, as you’re afraid you’ll say something offensive by accident. Or maybe you want to make sure the LGBTQ+ children and teens in your life feel supported, but aren’t sure how to do that. Keep reading for tips on navigating these obstacles and ensuring that the LGBTQ+ kids in your life feel supported, valued and loved.

Why Your Kid Isn’t Going to Princeton and a Bunch of Other Top Schools
Inc. – May 24, 2022
The odds against getting into elite universities have never been higher. But maybe it’s time to recalculate the value of a college education.

I think everybody in my school struggles’: A closer look at mental health awareness for young people
CBS Chicago – May 24, 2022
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and this afternoon, CBS 2 is focusing on the mental health of children. What should parents look for in their kids? And how should they respond if a child shows signs of depression or anxiety?


How to talk to your children about tragedy, like school shootings
WBKO Bowling Green (KY) – May 24, 2022
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and public schools mental health counselor Lisa Rice joined us to talk about mental health and children. What was supposed to be advice on signs to look out for in your child if they are struggling with something mentally and how to seek help, instead turned into how to talk to your child about something as tragic as a school shooting.

Admissions Process & Strategy

It’s not too early to start the next college application process. These things are key.
The News & Observer (NC) – May 25, 2022
Applying for college is stressful. There are deadlines, financial paperwork, standardized tests and decisions that will impact the trajectory of students’ lives and career paths. Here’s what two high school counselors said are the top 5 most important pieces of a college application.

When to Apply to College
U.S. News & World Report – May 23, 2022
Deadlines and requirements for college applications vary, so experts advise high school students to begin the process by the start of their senior year. Planning ahead is especially important for students interested in specific college programs, like ROTC, which often requires physical fitness tests and nominations.

We want to know: College tuition keeps rising. Is it still worth the cost?
Boston.com – May 23, 2022
When coronavirus first upended higher education, many colleges put a freeze on tuition hikes as they weathered the pandemic. Now as these institutions try to get back to normal, the cost of attendance is bouncing back as well just as millions of Americans are questioning whether or not pursuing a degree is still worth the cost.

Financial Aid/Scholarships

How to pay for college without help from parents
Fox Business – May 24, 2022
You can attend college even without financial help from your parents. Learn some ways, like how to fill out the FAFSA.

Department Of Education Makes It Easier To Get Financial Aid This Year
Forbes – May 19, 2022
Proving you are poor takes a lot of work. You have to collect documents showing all the money you do not make, show evidence of family members supported by very little money and answer probing questions about how on earth your family can survive on so little. Unfortunately, that is precisely how the financial aid verification system works. Thankfully, for the second year…

Financial Aid Office Staff Shortages Reach ‘Crisis,’ Survey Shows
Inside Higher Ed – May 24, 2022
A new survey shows persistent staffing shortages in financial aid offices, which has raised concerns about their ability to address student needs and maintain compliance with federal regulations in the future.

Career & Technical Education

As college enrollment tanks, there’s a growing push to celebrate students going into skilled trades
CNBC – May 21, 2022
Signing Day, when soon-to-be high school graduates pledge to attend a particular college or university, has always been considered a special occasion. Now students who commit to a career in the skilled trades are being celebrated, too.

Many certificate programs don’t pay off, but colleges want to keep offering them anyway
The Hechinger Report – April 30, 2022
Institutions are quietly resisting a proposal to strip federal funding from low-payoff programs

5 Reasons to Consider Community College
U.S. News & World Report – May 19, 2022
Attending community college can be an affordable way to dip your toes into higher education before transferring to a four-year program. But these colleges also offer a breadth of programs that can allow students to forego the university experience entirely. Two-year public colleges offer low tuition, job-specific training and other benefits.

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How to Pay for College

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How the Average Student Can Pay for College
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The JED High School Journey
Partnering with High Schools to Support Emotional Well-being and Prevent Suicide

Teen Health

Educator’s View: How Outward Bound Schools Support Student Wellness — & Learning
The 74 – May 24, 2022
The pandemic has demonstrated the importance of balancing a drive toward academic outcomes with self-care. Now more than ever, developing a strong sense of community and belonging at school is crucial. One way to do this is to develop school communities where students can show up each day as themselves, knowing they are valued, listened to and cared for.

How Gen Z spent the year online and what it means now.
Verizon News Center – May 24, 2022
It comes as no surprise that video consumption among Gen Z has increased over the last two years and has become a major part of their daily lives. That’s just one of the many findings from the 2021 Video Entertainment Study, recently released by Magid, a research, strategy and consulting company. Twice in 2021, Magid conducted a study with Gen Z teens and their parents in the United States to discover how the pandemic impacted the amount of content they were watching.


The SAT Has Gone Digital. How Else Should College Admissions Change?
The New Yorker – May 24, 2022
The importance of the SAT, inequality in college admissions, and what it’s like to take the new digital SAT.