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Celebrate School Counselors
They are experienced professionals with the knowledge and skills to help students deal with stress, plan for success, and handle everything in between.  February 6-10 is National School Counseling Week, a time to celebrate the important work school counselors do and the positive impact they have on students in the Cherry Creek School District.

Counselors are on staff in every middle and high school in the district.  They work with students throughout their middle and high school years, providing important support in three main areas:
•    Academic planning – helping students plan their middle and high school coursework so they can graduate and meet the requirements for whatever they want to pursue first after high school; college, vocational training, the military or the workforce.
•    Career exploration – helping students discover and develop the talents and interests that may lead to a challenging and rewarding career.
•    Personal/Social support – working in tandem with mental health staff to help students who are struggling with personal or family issues and educating all students about healthy choices and suicide prevention.

“The scope of the work our counselors do on behalf of our students and families cannot be overstated,” said Superintendent Mary Chesley.  “They help students transition to and through middle and high school, teach them how to make good choices, handle challenges, and sometimes deal with crisis or tragedy, all while making a plan for success in college or careers.”

Grandview’s Paul Eppard, who has been a counselor for 15 years, says the work is incredibly rewarding.

“I have the best job in the school,” said Eppard.  “I get to teach, I get to work with kids individually, work with their families, and work with them for four years so I get to know them really well.  That’s pretty awesome!”

In Cherry Creek, counseling programs are data-driven and results-oriented.  Counselors use surveys, test scores, graduation rates, college acceptance and attendance rates, and other measures, to ensure students are getting the support they need.

In 2007, the Grandview Counseling Department was the first in the state of Colorado to earn the prestigious “Recognized American School Counselor Model Program” status from the American School Counselors Association.

Individual counselors have also been honored for excellence.  Overland’s Chahnuh Fritz and Smoky Hill’s Craig Quintana were named “Counselors of the Month” in September and November respectively, by the Colorado Council on High School and College Relations.
Posted 2/6/2012 9:34 AM
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Cherry Creek School District No. 5 does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability in admission to its programs, services or activities, in access to them, in treatment of individuals, or in any aspect of their operations. The lack of English language skills shall not be a barrier to admission or participation in the district’s activities and programs. The Cherry Creek School District No. 5 also does not discriminate in its hiring or employment practices. This notice is provided as required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Questions, complaints, or requests for additional information regarding these laws may be forwarded to the designated compliance officer: District Compliance Officer or directly to the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, Region VIII, Federal Office Building 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite #310, Denver, CO 80204.

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