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Kaela's Blog

Empowering School Counselors: Strategies for Supporting Students' Mental Health and Wellbeing


Kaela Vance is a mental health counselor who has been invited to present to Dublin City Schools' counselors next week on strategies to help students experiencing stress, anxiety, depression, grief, and/or trauma. As a seasoned professional in the field, Kaela will be sharing valuable insights and practical tips that the counselors can use to support their students' mental health and wellbeing.


One of the first things Kaela will address is the importance of recognizing the signs of stress, anxiety, depression, grief, and trauma in students. She will provide the counselors with a list of common symptoms that they can look out for, such as changes in behavior, appetite, sleep patterns, and mood. By being able to identify these warning signs, the counselors will be better equipped to intervene early and provide support before the student's mental health worsens.


Another key point that Kaela will emphasize is the need for a multi-faceted approach to supporting students experiencing mental health challenges. This may involve a combination of individual counseling sessions, group therapy, psychoeducation, and referrals to outside resources, such as psychiatrists, psychologists, or community mental health services. Kaela will highlight the importance of tailoring the approach to each student's unique needs and circumstances, and of involving parents and teachers in the process as appropriate.


Kaela will also provide the counselors with specific strategies and techniques that they can use to help students manage stress, anxiety, depression, grief, and trauma. For example, she may suggest mindfulness exercises, deep breathing techniques, progressive muscle relaxation, or cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques such as reframing negative thoughts or problem-solving skills. She may also recommend specific resources, such as online support groups, apps, or podcasts, that students can access on their own time.


In addition to these practical strategies, Kaela will stress the importance of creating a safe and supportive school environment for all students, regardless of their mental health status. She will encourage the counselors to foster a culture of empathy, inclusivity, and understanding, and to work collaboratively with teachers, administrators, and other school staff to create a positive and welcoming school climate. By creating a sense of belonging and support, students may be more likely to feel comfortable seeking help when they need it.


Finally, Kaela will provide the counselors with some guidance on self-care, emphasizing the importance of maintaining their own mental health and wellbeing in order to better support their students. She may suggest strategies such as regular exercise, healthy eating habits, adequate sleep, and mindfulness practices. She may also encourage the counselors to seek out their own counseling or support as needed, and to develop a network of colleagues or peers who can offer emotional support and guidance.


If other school counselors are looking for assistance and resources on how to recognize and address signs of stress, anxiety, depression, grief, and trauma in students, they can reach out to my office for support. I offer workshops that can provide valuable information and strategies to help school counselors and educators identify the signs of emotional and psychological difficulties in students, as well as effective interventions and resources to support them. By providing this workshop, my goal is to empower school counselors and educators to better understand and respond to the needs of their students, ultimately leading to improved academic outcomes and overall well-being. Call 614-647-HELP to schedule a short phone consult to see how we can collaborate!


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