School Interventionist for School Problems
Imagine, for a moment, a school where: meetings focus on priority school goals and all members of the staff strategize together on the steps to accomplish them.
Students become part of the solution for their own academic or behavior issues by identifying times when they are slightly more successful.
Parents work with the school regarding their child’s education because the school counselor and administrator use the parent as a consultant.
Teachers see themselves and their students as competent individuals and deal with challenges in the classroom on their own, using solution focused conversations that result in respect between both parties.
(Metcalf, L. Field Guide to the Solutuion Focused School, 2008).
Yes....this is possible and it is happening around the world.
Why does this work?
In problem focused approaches, too much time is spent on what is not working, instead of looking in a variety of contexts for times when things are working. Using this approach, empowerment takes place in the very first meeting and keeps everyone focused on the direction of choice.
For example, a twelve year old with repetitive behavior problems would be asked: "tell me about times when you don't let the behavior take you over...what is different then? What do you do, where are you, what are you thinking about, what are your parents or teachers doing?"
At first, a twelve year old may be taken back. After all, who asks the student when he/she is successful. But as the school counselor perseveres and stays patient, solutions emerge:
'When I am in science class. I like that class because we are in pairs and its not boring."
"When I am in Ms. Tatum's class. She likes me and when I raise my hand, she calls on me."
"At football practice- I always do what the coach says because I don't want to run laps."
These "exceptions" to times when the negative behavior happens become clues for change. The school counselor can then see what Ms. Tatum and the science teacher and the coach do that encourages success. And, the student is empowered because he has discovered himself, that things are not always as bad as he thought. When the school counselor meets with his team (recommended) and shares the exceptions, with the student present, the system changes.
This is a tidbit of what these workshops are about. They offer practical, hands on strategies that work!
The workshops take the typical school issue and meld it with a solution focused approach which also accomplishes the following:
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Any opinions are mine, and any errors, omissions, or misrepresentations are my responsibility alone.
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