Counselor Connection

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2020 grad

Graduation 2020 is right around the corner and WKYT and their partners want to honor high school seniors. Let your families and communities know they can send a picture of 2020 graduates to and post it to the WKYT website to share with friends and family.

Should there be any issues with the page or uploading images, email Teri Brock, Casey Whisman or Alexis Ayres.


Advice from Elementary School Counselors for Elementary School Counselors (EILA Opportunity)

We have incredible elementary school counselors across the state!

In this video, you will hear from James Talley (Jefferson County), Heather Haynes (Jefferson County), Lauren Clark (Bullitt County), Lauren Zakem (Jefferson County), and Sarah Akin (Christian County).

Email Kristen Jarboe to get your EILA certificate after watching the video.

Check Out KDE's COVID-19 School Counseling Page!

We have a dedicated school counseling page filled with resources for school counselors from the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE). Check it out here!


Kentucky School Counselor Association Video

The Kentucky School Counselor Association (KSCA) has created this video for your students to show how school counselors across the state are still here for their students, families and school communities.

heather deckard barren county counselor

Heather M Deckard, School Counselor, Park City Elementary School (Barren County)

The Counselor is Still In

By Heather Deckard

Barren County Public Schools

Despite COVID-19 pushing us out of the classrooms, our kiddos still need social-emotional learning. In fact, they need it now more than ever!  

So this old-school educator of 21 years knew she needed to get to work. Google Sites and Forms became my new best friends. They have enabled me to continue our schoolwide mindfulness program, remind students of what we have learned in our counseling sessions together, offer new lessons and best of all, they have allowed me to stay connected with 430 kids!

I self- navigated and leaned on our tech team and made it happen. It was fairly easy to learn and has been a huge blessing for me and my kiddos.

To motivate my kids to participate, I teamed up with our parent/teacher organization to encourage students to check-in through various forms on my website, giving them a chance to win a Friday pizza delivery.

COVID-19 may have pulled my students away from me, but I found a way to bring them back home!

Check out Heather's incredible website!

Do You Have Any 9th or 10th Grade Early Graduates?

As you know, end-of-course (EOC) examination requirements for current, active juniors, identified in Infinite Campus by the Intent for Early Graduation flags have been waived. If these students have met ACT benchmarks, they are eligible to complete the Early Graduation pathway this year.

The waiver, however, only addresses juniors.

We do understand that you may have sophomores (and maybe even freshmen) who planned to graduate early this year. If there are extenuating circumstances that you’d like to discuss for a student in grade 9-10 who met ACT benchmarks, has an active IEG flag and wants/needs to graduate this year, email Damien Sweeney, program coordinator for comprehensive school counseling, and Shara Savage, program consultant for the Office of Assessment and Accountability. Please do this no later than May 1.

Prichard Committee

Student Mental Health Cafe

Encourage your student to take a study break and join two student-driven groups, the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team and Loqui, partnering to host the Student Mental Health Café, Tuesdays at 5-6 pm ET at this zoom link.

These virtual sessions are open to all Kentucky high school students, facilitated by other high school students, and designed to bolster social connection, support and teach resilience during an otherwise isolating time. For more information, email Student Voice Team senior director Rachel Belin.

Free Curricula and Resources from Everfi

EVERFI has instructional digital and offline resources that can be smoothly integrated into your remote learning plans as a supplemental resource. The digital resources are done completely online through virtual simulations and interactive learning environments to make it very engaging for students.

EVERFI's resources focus on teaching real-world skills in the following content areas: social-emotional learning, STEM, health and wellness, financial literacy and college and career readiness. Each student has their own account and works at the student’s own pace at an individual computer or tablet.

Kentucky educators have access to an EVERFI educator account, where they can view student progress and assessment scores, access offline resources and more. To get started, visit the educator landing page.

There are additional resources to help with planning and pacing, including a 2 Week Remote Learning Plan and SEL Pacing Guide. For support, email Maura Slone, the Kentucky schools manager.

2020 Career and Technical Education (CTE) Summer Conference

Get excited about the 2020 CTE Summer Conference. Along with several days full of great presentations and opportunities to learn and grow, there will be a special counselor day on July 29.

Registration is now open for the 2020 Career and Technical Education Summer Program. The conference is currently still being held at the Galt House Hotel and Suites, Louisville, July 23-26.

Based on a first-come, first-served basis, school counselors who register will get reimbursed. The Office of Career and Technical Education and Student Transition will reimburse the districts (please do not pay as individuals) for counselors who are eligible for this free registration. You can register online on the Kentucky ACTE website.

April 22, 2020


What a unique time it is! How do we remind our students to still dream? How do we remind them that they are resilient and amazing?

Check out this song from the film Abominable. Could you create a flipped classroom of a school counseling curriculum lesson using this song?

If so, align your lesson to ASCA's  Mindsets & Behaviors for Student Success using Mindset 2: Self-confidence in ability to succeed. Use Behavior Self-Management Skill 5: Demonstrate perseverance to
achieve long- and short-term goals and 6: Demonstrate ability to overcome barriers to learning.

If you have other songs that you recommend, send them to me at

Resilience Through Connection Summit with Darrell Scott and Christian Moore: 

3-4 p.m. ET April 23

As school closures stretch  through the end of the year, many of our students feel increasingly isolated. We are especially concerned for students who were already dealing with anxiety, depression and issues in the home. 

To help educators address these concerns, we've put together a free online summit. Please join us for a live online chat between two thought leaders on this important topic: Darrell Scott and Christian Moore.

This online summit will be hosted virtually and participants will be able to submit questions as we all learn from these field experts. Register on Zoom here!

COVID-19 Resources for Minimum High School Graduation Requirements

Parchment Final Transcript Webinars

Parchment is having Final Transcript Webinars this month and I am just finding out about it. I will send out a KSIS notification, but I also wanted to get this out straight to counselors, especially new ones.

Here are the registration links for the Final Transcript Season Webinars: 

April 22 Registration Link

April 29 Registration Link

Free Social/Emotional Curriculum Resources

In March, Sanford Programs introduced an online toolkit to support parents, caretakers and teachers as you transition to facilitating social-emotional lessons at home.

This month, they are launching an online resource specifically for educators: "Inspire at Home." The resources are free to educators.


NCAA Eligibility Center COVID-19 Response FAQs.

View REL Midwest Webinar: Research-Based Resources, Considerations, and Strategies for Remote Learning

How districts are tackling the big issues now. Plus: 3 tips for humanizing digital pedagogy (Edutopia)

Emergency Financial Aid for College Students

There will be more than $6 billion given to institutions of higher education for emergency financial aid grants. This money is to be provided directly to students for expenses related to disruptions in education caused by COVID-19, including course materials, technology, food, housing, healthcare and childcare.

The guidance from the U.S. Department of Education does not instruct institutions on how to provide emergency financial aid to students, but does encourage leaders to prioritize those students with the greatest need. Find out how much each institution received and how to advocate for youth experiencing homelessness and foster care to be prioritized for assistance. Read more on the SchoolHouse Connection website.

To learn more, sign up for the following webinar: 2-3:15 p.m. ET April 22, "FERPA and Students Experiencing Homelessness." 

Kentucky Digital Distance Learning Resources

The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) is curating collections of digital learning resources that might assist schools working to implement distance learning. This collection pulls together links to resources created by KDE digital learning coaches (#KYDLC), Kentucky library media specialists, Student Technology Leadership Program coaches (#STLP) and other digital learning leaders into one handy reference location.

KDE helps schools through challenges of providing special education during NTI days

Visit Kentucky Teacher for the story and a link to a webcast.

KDE, KHEAA address impact of non-traditional instruction on KEES awards

Visit the Kentucky Department of Education Media Portal to watch the superintendents' webcast.

Padlet with Corona Virus Resources

Padlet for Social and Emotional Learning

I strongly suggest you start with the "Kernels of Practice" article.

Nourish to Flourish

The pandemic has opened our eyes to the importance of connection, relationships, love and kindness. Take a look at the extraordinary good that is going on in our world by checking out The Good News Network.

This is such a trying time that has not been easy for you. Have you been easy or hard on yourself? It is so easy to point to all of our flaws and hard to focus on the fact that we are all doing the very best that we can.

If you are like me, finding a balance between working at home and parenting is tough! You may not have kids, but the new responsibility of checking in with your families and students who are enduring poverty or trauma weighs on you.

Check out this song from the movie "Ugly Dolls" and remind yourself that we may all feel broken at this time, but we are all beautiful because we love and care for others.