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  • Register NOW!

    PSSCA 31st Annual Conference: January 22- January 24
    Embassy Suites Myrtle Beach – Oceanfront Resort
    9800 Queensway Blvd, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572

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  • Join Now!

    If you haven’t already joined the largest group of professional school counselors in South Carolina, isn’t it time you did?

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  • Coming Soon!

    Call for Presentation Proposals. Be thinking about a special program that you want to share with others and check back in July for the submittal process.

  • Professional Recognition

    School Counselor and Superintendent of the Year awarded at the 2014 PSSCA Conference!

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News & Information

  • anxiety

    Dealing With Anxiety

    During the course of a school year, many students experience stress and anxiety.  Stressors may include grades, college applications, standardized tests, and peer pressure.  Anxiety can affect a student’s school work and state of mind. When students become overwhelmed with such feelings, they may begin to feel alone or isolated with their emotions which can lead to negative reactions in order to relieve the stress, such as drugs or alcohol.  It is always best for the student to employ sound positive strategies in order to deal with this problem.  Music therapy, writing, and counseling are a few effective strategies that students can use to manage anxiety.  One popular and effective way to relieve anxiety is to listen to music.  Music is very relaxing and therapeutic, which helps to relax the mind and ease tension.  In most cases, calm instrumental music is recommended because it provides a relaxing atmosphere.  While listening to a selection, the student is advised to think about a favorite place or event that he/she enjoys. Writing is another method that helps students to release their feelings in a constructive manner.  Students do not have to focus their writings on thoughts that trouble them; instead they may choose to write about pleasant thoughts or experiences.  Writing is excellent for reducing anxiety because it serves as a release of internal feelings.  The writings can be a poem, short paragraph, or a journal.  One of the most effective ways of reducing anxiety is to talk out and express one's feelings through counseling. Talking to a parent, close friend, teacher, or school counselor helps the student to vocalize his/her feelings and release anxiety.  Talking to someone also helps the student to prioritize and reassess situations that he/she is facing.  Anxiety affects our students academically and socially; however, with appropriate strategies such as music, writing, and counseling, students can relieve their anxiety and learn how to positively manage their feelings.  Eric R. Hawkins, M.Ed. School Counselor Spring Valley High School ...

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    Collecting School-Wide Behavior Data

    As Professional School Counselors we are always seeking ways to improve or craft and reach more students and utilize data to prove it.  For me, utilizing a school-wide Universal Behavior Screener helped me do this.  As educators, we also know that academic success and behavioral success go hand in hand.  If you are successful academically, chances are you are behaving in expected ways.  Universal Behavior Screeners can help educators (Counselors, Teachers, Admin) understand what behavioral supports a student may need to be successful.  In conjunction with discipline referrals, grades, and attendance the Universal Behavior Screener can help counselors create groups for students that are specific to their needs. There are all kinds of behavior screeners out there that measure the seriousness of problem behaviors; however, for my purposes as a Professional School Counselor, I chose to use the Student Risk Screening Scale (for externalizing behaviors) and the Student Internalizing Behavior Scale (SRSS/SIBS).  The SRSS/SIBS indicate students that may be at risk for problem behavior on a tiered scale from low-risk to high-risk.  It is one that can be done school-wide by teachers in 2o minutes and the results can be determined almost immediately (if done electronically).  These results can serve as a basis for developing social skills groups for students, and to progress monitor growth.  One other benefit to using the SRSS/SIBS was that it is free to use.  So in a time where budgets are very tight, this helped me get traction in my building to administer it. So after my staff had completed the SRSS/SIBS I was able to sit down with grade level teams to collaborate around the data to develop groups.  This was highly effective!  The data provided a place to start the conversation about groups of kids and who needed intervention first.  Sometimes the data confirmed what we knew about a student’s needs, however, other times it showed a different need in the overall dynamics within an entire grade level.  So instead of me putting out little fires here and there, the data showed a need to tighten up some universal behavior expectations as a grade level.  This allowed the teachers and me to develop a plan where they would reinforce school-wide and classroom behavior expectations, and I would provide some specific classroom guidance lessons.  Then after the behavior expectations had been re-taught and guidance lessons had been done, we could review the behavior data and see who responded to the grade-level intervention and who still needed support.  It seemed like, all of a sudden, I went from putting out fires to systematically intervening with students, and that was amazing!  Using a simple Universal Behavior Screener allowed me to widen the scope of students I could serve and do it effectively.  If you would like to know more about the SRSS/SIBS I am more than happy to share it and how it works!  Feel free to contact me at Erin Matheson has been a School Counselor for 10 years, working with students from Elementary to High School in Washington State and is new to South Carolina.  Erin has been very active in implementing PBIS in her previous school and district, and working with colleagues on implementing Tier II and III interventions that align with both the ASCA National Model and PBIS.   ...

  • award

    School Counselor Advocate of the Year Award

    Beginning this year, PSSCA will award a School Counselor Advocate of the Year Award. The nominator must be a member of PSSCA.   Nominees may be district or building level administrators, school board members, legislators, or supervisors of school counseling services who have made significant contributions to the implementation and improvement of school counseling programs.  The purpose of the Advocate of the Year Award is to recognize persons who have demonstrated their beliefs in and support of school counseling programs that have had an impact on counselors and their students at the local, state, or national level.   PSSCA members can nominate a deserving advocate by completing the  information HERE. The deadline for completing all School Counselor Advocate of the Year nomination information is December 12, 2014.  You can find the Nomination Packet HERE. Jennifer H. Adams, M.Ed., Ed.S., NBCT School Counselor President,  Palmetto State School Counselor Association Rocky Creek Elementary School   ...

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    PSSCA School Counselor of the Year Awards

    The Palmetto State School Counselor Association is the only charted state division of the American School Counselor Association. Beginning this year, the award committee will go to an online nomination and application process as we recognize the best professionals in our field including: an outstanding elementary counselor, a middle school counselor, and high school counselor. We acknowledge each counselor for the quality of service he/she provides students, families, schools, districts and other stakeholders in which he/she works. By nominating a school counselor in your district, you are giving a well-deserved tribute to a colleague. Additionally, winners of the Palmetto State School Counselor of the Year Award will be nominated for the national American School Counselor Association (ASCA) School Counselor of the Year Award. PSSCA guidelines for nominating a school counselor are as follows: *The nominee must be a school counselor who is currently a member of the Palmetto State School Counselor Association. *Nominee must be currently employed as a full-time school counselor, in addition to practicing for at least five years in the field of school counseling. *Nominee must hold at least a Master’s Degree in school counseling. *Members of the PSSCA Awards Committee are ineligible for nomination. *Counselors are not eligible if they received the award within the last three years. An administrator, school counselor, counselor-educator or colleague can nominate by going to the PSCCA Awards Website. Deadline for Nominations is October 24th. Nominees will be notified by PSSCA Awards Committee of their nomination and will be sent a link to begin the online application process.   ...

  • PS15header

    Register Now! 2015 Palmetto State School Counselor Association Conference

    We are very excited about our 2015 Palmetto State School Counselor Association Conference: Find Your Oasis...Reflect, Refresh, Recharge.  We invite you to join us as at the The Embassy Suites in Myrtle Beach from January 22-24. We are also excited about our new partnership with the National Center for Youth Issues. This organization will be handling all of our conference planning and management services. The conference webpage is now ready and includes links for conference registration, hotel reservations, call for presenters, and call for exhibitors. Don't delay. Register for the conference NOW! Did I mention that our luncheon keynote speaker for the PSSCA annual conference is Julia Cook? Julia Cook is a former teacher, school counselor, speaker and one of the nation's foremost authors of guidance storybooks for children. Julia has published over fifty successful storybooks, earning numerous national awards and recognition. In Julia's presentation, "Unlearning Helplessness – Motivating the Underachiever," she shares how underachieving occurs when students have a significant gap between their abilities, and what they achieve in school. In this interactive session, she will discuss the four types of underachievers, explore the characteristics and causes of underachieving, and present effective solutions that can reverse this problem. We also have three dynamic pre-conference presenters lined up and we know that your presentation proposals are going to be outstanding. If you are interested in submitting a proposal, the deadline is October 15. We expect this to be our best conference yet and we hope to see YOU there! Jennifer H. Adams. & Marci Newman PSSCA President PSSCA 2015 Conference Committee Chair ...

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Upcoming Events

Thu Jan 22 @ 1:00PM - 09:00PM
PSSCA 2015 Conference
Fri Jan 23 @ 7:30AM - 07:30PM
PSSCA 2015 Conference
Sat Jan 24 @ 8:00AM - 12:15PM
PSSCA 2015 Conference
Mon Feb 09 @ 9:00AM - 01:00PM
Suicide Prevention - Training the Trainers TTT
Wed Mar 18 @ 9:00AM - 01:00PM
McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (USC Children’s Law Center)