Collaborating with School Counselors to Support Students’ Social-Emotional Health Post-COVID
Blog Post Written By: Stacy Meester
As we continue to navigate life at school amid the COVID pandemic, many have noticed a dramatic rise in the social-emotional needs of students. Schools are experiencing increased student behaviors of refusal, low stamina, heightened anxiety, depression…etc. The National Association of School Psychologists recommends focusing on a Tier 1, schoolwide approach to addressing student needs post-COVID, but School Psychologists may be struggling with determining the best ways to support the influx of student needs school-wide. Although these unprecedented times bring about new challenges, it is also an opportunity for School Psychologists to team up with other school professionals to address these needs through a collaborative approach.
With National School Counseling Week just around the corner (Feb. 7-11, 2022), it is the perfect time to focus attention on the value of School Psychologists and School Counselors working together to assist students in adjusting to post-COVID life at school. The central theme for National School Counseling Week 2022, is “School Counseling: Better Together”, and highlights the importance of working collaboratively with school staff to benefit students. A joint publication by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) and the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), outlines several key factors that can be used to support students’ social and emotional well-being, such as utilizing a multitiered system of supports. School Psychologists can work alongside School Counselors to provide Tier 1, school wide social-emotional curriculums, as well as more targeted Tier 2 supports when needed.
As School Psychologists, we may find ourselves spending a large amount of time explaining the differences between a School Counselor and a School Psychologist, but let us not forget all of the ways in which our roles can be quite similar in supporting students’ social-emotional and behavioral needs post-COVID.
- American School Counselor Association. (2021). School Counseling and School Reentry During COVID-19.
- American School Counselor Association. (2022). National School Counseling Week.
- American School Counselor Association & National Association of School Psychologists. (2020). School Reentry Considerations Supporting Student Social and Emotional Learning and Mental and Behavioral Health Amidst COVID-19 [handout].
- Special Ed Connection. (2022) How schools are trying to win the battle for better behavior. LRP Publications
- National Association of School Psychologists. (2020). Providing effective social–emotional and behavioral supports after COVID-19 closures: Universal screening and Tier 1 interventions[handout].
- National Association of School Psychologists. (2020). Tier 2 Social–Emotional Learning/Mental and Behavioral Health Interventions: Post COVID-19 [handout].