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International School Counseling Week! February 3-8, 2019

February 3-8th, 2019 we are celebrating the 1st International School Counseling Week.

How can you celebrate?

  • Print this poster and take a photo with your counseling team and post it on our Facebook page or on Twitter using @ISCACounselors #ISCAcelebrates.

  • Display this poster in and around your counseling offices and share with your colleagues the great work you are doing! 
  • Invite faculty members to your office to enjoy some hot chocolate and a chat!
  • Become a member of ISCA this week and join our community of over 500 counselors around the world and start accessing resources and our community instantly.

ISCA Scope & Sequence for the Core Counseling Curriculum 

In an endeavor to make our jobs both easier and more cohesive, members of the ISCA team have been working on developing a Nursery-Grade 12 Scope & Sequence for the Core Counseling Curriculum. What this specifically addresses is content that could/would ideally be available to all students over the course of a school year.

The Core Counseling Curriculum consists of structured developmental lessons designed to assist students in achieving the desired competencies below and to provide all students with the knowledge and skills in the four domains ( academic,career, personal/social and global perspective). This curriculum is infused throughout the school’s overall curriculum and is presented systematically through Nursery- Grade 12 classrooms, individual student planning and group activities. It is important to note that it does not need to be delivered solely by the school counselor. The various methods below are ways in which curriculum can be delivered include: classroom instruction, interdisciplinary units, group activities, etc.

Using the CASEL competencies as a framework, the ISCA standards as a guide and the experience of counselors around the world as the foundation for this project, we have developed this Core Counseling Curriculum Scope & Sequence. We hope to have created a user-friendly document that counselors can use to support their curriculum lessons - it is not meant to be prescriptive in any way, but rather a resource that is helpful, dynamic, and recognizes the diversity that exists in our jobs.   

From 2016-2018 our team has been: 

  • Image result for counseling curriculumCollecting information from counselors around the world - what was “the curriculum” sequence they used?
  • Connecting the idea of a scope & sequence to something evidence-based and reputable - the CASEL framework.
  • Incorporating ISCA standards to the document so that the work we do can be seen as clearly linking to and supporting the ISCA model itself.
  • Writing/editing/comparing resources to create drafts.
  • Getting feedback & editing some more!

During the 2018/19 school year we are publishing the Scope & Sequence to be more widely used. We are looking for interested international school counselors to "pilot" the Scope & Sequence and provide your feedback and experience with us. For more information on how to Pilot the document and frequently asked questions, please read this document

Please express your interest in piloting this document by emailing us at info@iscainfo.com we will follow up with you four times during this school year to collect your feedback. 

Download the Nursery-Grade 5 Scope & Sequence Document

Download the Grade 6-12 Scope & Sequence Document

How to Pilot the S&S + Frequently Asked Questions

Special thanks to Kathryn Manu and Heather DeVore for their dedication and passion to this work, as well as all the counselors who have contributed to these documents over the last 1 1/2 years! 

"13 Reasons Why" Season 1 Resources

Here is a list of the primary concerns from Dr. Poland regarding 13 Reasons Why. Please review this list especially as Season 2 is set to launch May 18, 2018. Updated: May 9, 2018.

Webinar: Responding to “13 Reasons Why”, Recommendations for International School Counselors with Dr. Poland.

Go here for the 1-hour recording of the 2017 webinar. Here is the presentation by Dr. Poland from the webinar.
Recommended Suicide Prevention Programs/Curriculum
Recommended Websites on Suicide Prevention
Important points from the webinar
  • Update the list of resources of mental health services in your area.
    • Know what is available (hotlines, therapists, etc) in your community. Have easy access to this information.
  • Know the laws regarding suicide in your country. Is it considered an illegal act in the country where you are living?
  • Establish a suicide prevention team at your school. Conduct regular trainings with staff, parents and include curriculum for students. (Suggestion: Use this webinar as a starting point for conversations with counselors and administration. It would be a great way to spend a professional development day.)
  • There is a  strong association between bullying and suicide. Particularly with LGBT youth.
  • We need to spell out what it means when you say “vulnerable youth” should not watch the program.
  • Nothing about this program should EVER be shown in schools.
  • We need carefully plan units on youth suicide in classroom size groups or smaller. Do not discuss suicide in an assembly format. It does not allow for conversation or for students to ask questions.
  • Teachers need to have the facts. Provide teachers will “talking points” or a script. For example:  Mental health treatment 9 out of 10 who die by suicide are mentally ill. There are alternatives. No single thing is responsible for suicide. Bullying alone does not cause a suicide. Classroom discussion should stress to students what they do when they have a concern about suicide.
  • Counselors need to ask direct questions. Mr. Porter should have asked:
    • Hannah, are you thinking you don’t want to live?
    • Are you thinking of suicide?
    • Plan: Do you have a plan or method in mind?
    • Prior: Have you ever attempted suicide before
  • Notify parents immediately.

Professional Development

Join ISCA today to continue to be apart of these conversations and have access to more resources, as well as stay up-to-date about the 2019 ISCA Conference, March 14-16, 2018, in Brussels, Belgium.

Dr. Poland will be presenting as part of the ISCA-AAIE Summer Institute at Nova Southeastern University, June 25-28, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Register is still open:  click here for more information

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