Guidance Department

AZ Academy’s Guidance Department’s goal is to assist all students in the process of personal, academic and career development so that they may reach their full potential as productive citizens in a changing society. It is predicated on the belief that all students are unique and dynamic individuals, capable of becoming responsive and productive adults. Our program is proactive and preventative in nature and is committed to meeting the needs of all students using age appropriate interventions, lessons and programs delivered systematically by the school counselor, academic intervention specialist, and other support personnel.

The Guidance Department at AZ Academy provides integration of character education, intervention services, referrals to other professionals in the community who can assist students with reaching their full potential, peer help, dissemination of information, individual and group counseling, and participation in extracurricular activities that develop social skills and foster healthy lifestyles. These services are provided in conjunction with consultation with parents, teachers, administrators, and other educators.

Second Year of Morning Meeting/Advisory Curriculum

This year, the Guidance Department will continue to implement the guidance counseling curriculum written by Mark D. Nelson. It is important that we implement this curriculum for the following reasons:

  • The curriculum is based on the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) Standards. Standards-based instruction is very important to maintaining quality control as well as ensuring that we are meeting important goals. Just like we have standards-based instruction for our academic and enrichment courses, it is also important that our character education program is standards-based.
  • It is important that we collect data on the academic, social/emotional, and career development of our students. This curriculum will help us streamline the data collection process. Data is important so that we can make data-driven decisions as well as apply for grants.
  • The Guidance Department’s goal for SY 2013-2014 is to become a Recognized ASCA Model Program (RAMP). Implementing this curriculum is the first step in realizing this goal.

Purpose

The purpose of the guidance curriculum is to enhance student development by promoting academic, career, and personal/social development. By implementing a guidance curriculum that is comprehensive, developmental, and based on standards and outcomes, school counseling departments can:

  • demonstrate their effectiveness in enhancing the academic, career, and social development of all students;
  • establish their school counseling program as an integral component of the academic mission of the school;
  • ensure every student has equitable access to school counseling initiatives, and school counselors;
  • teach and measure the knowledge and skills that all students should acquire;
  • collect data that demonstrate how students have developed as a result of implementing the guidance curriculum and whether or not the school counseling program is effective.

Concept and Design

The School Counselor’s Guide curriculum is designed and organized around academic, career, and personal/social domains of student development. Activities in The School Counselor’s Guide focus on building skills and competencies in these three developmental domains so that students are more likely to experience success in school. ASCA’s National Standards include three standards for each domain and are listed below.

Academic Development

  • Students will acquire the attitudes, knowledge, and skills contributing to effective learning in school and across the lifespan.
  • Students will complete school with the academic preparation essential to choose from a wide range of post-secondary options, including college.
  • Students will understand the relationship of academics to the world of work and to life at home and in the community.

Career Development

  • Students will acquire the skills to investigate the world of work in relation to knowledge of self and to make informed career decisions.
  • Students will employ strategies to achieve future career goals with success and satisfaction.
  • Students will understand the relationship between personal qualities, education, training, and the world of work.

Personal/Social Development

  • Students will acquire the knowledge, attitudes, and interpersonal skills to help them understand and respect self and others.
  • Students will make decisions, set goals, and take necessary action to achieve goals.
  • Students will understand safety and survival skills.

Homeroom teachers will continue to implement this curriculum in all grades by utilizing the Morning Meeting/Advisory period. Homeroom teachers will have 25 minutes this year (7:45 – 8:10 a.m.) to conduct morning meetings, teach lessons, and engage in meaningful dialogue that will help to foster personal growth among students. The curriculum includes assessments that will be completed by students, parents, and teachers. The effectiveness of the curriculum will be evaluated at the mid-year and end-of-year mark.

If you have any questions about this program or any of AZ Academy’s Guidance Department’s programs, please contact Berlina Wallace at bwallace@azvi.org or 340-718-7909.