Guidance counselors are available to help all students reach their full academic potential, establish a strong sense of spirituality and interest in Christianity, and grow to be contributing members of society. We strive to promote healthy emotional development that will shape each student into a responsible, independent, young woman.
Mount Carmel Academy counselors promote individual student success through a comprehensive program that recognizes each student's gifts and talents while encouraging development of these gifts on their journey to becoming a well rounded young woman. Counselors facilitate academic achievement to the best of each student's potential and foster social, emotional, and spiritual growth. Our work with the students is based on the principles of the Catholic Church as we nurture their spiritual growth through prayer. Our department respects each student's individual strengths and encourages her to recognize her areas for growth.
By following assigned students throughout their high school career, counselors are able to build rapport and foster personal relationships. With nine full-time counselors, we enjoy a low student-counselor ratio. This, in turn, allows for an open-door policy. While students do have assigned counselors, and are largely satisfied with them based on information gained from year-end surveys, they are, nonetheless, free to see the counselor with whom they feel most comfortable.
In addition to one-on-one counseling, our department also actively works to educate students and parents about issues relevant to adolescence. For over 10 years, we have conducted suicide awareness and prevention programs with the freshmen class. In addition, we have incorporated an easily accessible online resource, Naviance, for parents through our school Web site that provides information on issues ranging from eating disorders to financial aid for college. It is updated regularly and monitored to provide the most relevant information possible. We feel that having open communication with the parents is extremely important. We conduct various parent meetings throughout the year. Counselor interviews with parents and students are conducted in the fall of he eighth grade year and again in the spring semester of sophomore year. Upon receipt of standardized test scores, counselors meet with students and parents to review student testing results.
In order to prepare students for college, we provide a guidance handbook at each level which can be found in the document library of Naviance. Each handbook walks students through the next year. Naviance houses a vast amount of information regarding college searches. The College Tour introduces the students to many out-of-state colleges and is an excellent way to gain first-hand college information. The guidance department's Web site and Naviance are also equipped to inform parents and students of college and scholarship information, financial aid and summer programs.
We strive not only to prepare the girls for college, but also to introduce them to career-related activities. This takes place throughout the year, but especially at our annual career day. The freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors attend sessions conducted by professionals, many of them Mount Carmel Academy alumnae, working in the field. Throughout the year students are encouraged and directed in the use of Naviance's personality, learning styles, and career inventories.
Mount Carmel Academy's guidance program operates under specific goals, standards, and philosophy. The national standards have been met and are used to set the department goals on a yearly basis. Revisions to our program are made after self-evaluations and student evaluations of the department. Based on the results of these assessments, more meaningful measures are implemented to improve how standards are met based on student needs. The nine counselors have experience with the educational, informational and helping skills necessary to serve our student body. We understand that the success of our department is dependent upon cooperation, initiative, and professionalism. By adhering to our goals and philosophy and working cooperatively with administration and faculty, we strive to achieve the major expectation for our department which is to provide the best possible personal, spiritual, career, and college counseling for the students in our care.
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