Blog Entry by Kathleen Bassett Cramer

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Photo of Kathleen Bassett Cramer Kathleen Bassett Cramer is the School Counselor for Alburgh Community Education Center and the current President of the Vermont School Counselors Association (VTSCA). She is a passionate advocate for the importance of School Counselors in Education and the vital role they play in the wellbeing of all students. Kathleen is a graduate of the University of Maryland College of Education. She continued her education at Old Dominion University before completing her Masters at Johnson State College. Kathleen has spent over 25 years in education, teaching in Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey and Vermont, and writing educational articles and over 100 safety stories for PreK-3 school children.

Today School Counselors are being called upon to meet the social/emotional goals of their curriculum due to a constantly changing world. Many School Counselors are responsible for facilitating the planning, response, and advocacy of students' and staffs' emotional needs in any crisis situation. They are an integral component of the implementation of a crisis plan to ensure their school safety.

Numerous schools execute a three tiered system that includes a proactive (primary), immediate (secondary) and follow-up (tertiary) plan. The proactive piece is already a large part of the School Counselor's role. It includes supporting a safe, caring school and community culture, identifying students at risk for self-harm or harm to others, teaching social skills and counseling students with emotional difficulties. The second part includes the discussion of any possible event and any questions or means to minimize trauma. The third piece addresses victims' care and the debriefing of the event for future improvement/understanding and or preparation.

With strongly defined roles and thorough rehearsal and discussion of a crisis plan, many hardships can be avoided in the event of an actual crisis happening.

Page Last Updated on December 4, 2014