How School Counselors can Collaborate with Stakeholders

Being a team player is essential to supporting our students, especially when this profession can make you feel like you're on your own island! Check out these strategies for collaborating with stakeholders.

3 Ways to be a Team Player with Teachers

  1. Build morale: Teachers feel a lot of pressure and it can take a toll. Promote a fun, self-care environment and boost moods! Think games at staff meetings and inexpensive, thoughtful gifts.

  2. Train and teach: Don't assume teachers have the same SEL training you do... but they probably wish they did! Organize workshops or lead casual PD where you can share the latest SEL trends.

  3. Empathize: Teachers have extremely challenging jobs. A little empathy goes a long way!

3 Ways to be a Team Player with Parents

  1. Over communicate: Parents like to be in the loop when it comes to their child's wellbeing. Set up systems so they can get progress updates (without making you feel overwhelmed)!

  2. Explain the benefits of services: Parents don't always understand our role or perhaps even have a negative view of counseling. Educate them on the benefits and positive experience it is for their child.

  3. Empathize: Even if you are not a parent, try to relate to their challenges and understand their point of view.

3 Ways to be a Team Player with Admin

  1. Plan together: Sit down and have a planning session to look at proactive, preventative programs and school-wide initiatives. But come in with your own ideas. (You lead the dance!)

  2. Suggest alternatives to discipline: Like teachers, your admin likely didn't get the same SEL training you did. Share current research such as restorative practices to get them on board.

  3. Empathize: They have a lot on their plate and are often portrayed as the bad guy. Try to feel what it's like from their experience.

3 Ways to be a Team Player with Students

  1. Build rapport - Carve out time in the first few sessions to solely focus on building rapport. This shows your kiddos you care about them. Think ice breakers like genograms, about me games, jenga, etc.

  2. Provide closure - Kiddos need closure and function best with clear expectations. Use progress monitoring tools to keep track of sessions and don't forget to celebrate when they've completed services!

  3. Empathize - Even when (especially when!) you are frustrated with a student's behavior, step into their shoes for a much-needed perspective shift.

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Do you find it difficult to collaborate with stakeholders? Hopefully these strategies help!

 

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