Perceptions of school counselors and school principals about the National Standards for School Counseling Programs and the Transforming School Counseling Initiative.
Authors: Perusse, Rachelle
Goodnough, Gary E.
Donegan, Jenn
Jones, Candice
Pub Date: 02/01/2004
Publication: Name: Professional School Counseling Publisher: American School Counselor Association Audience: Academic; Professional Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Family and marriage; Psychology and mental health Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2004 American School Counselor Association ISSN: 1096-2409
Issue: Date: Feb, 2004 Source Volume: 7 Source Issue: 3
Accession Number: 114784730
Full Text: In a national survey, members from the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and the National Association of Elementary School Principals were asked the extent to which professional school counselors should emphasize the National Standards for School Counseling Programs (Campbell & Dahir, 1997) and the Transforming School Counseling Initiative (TSCI; The Education Trust, n.d.) in their school counseling programs. Respondents were also asked about appropriate and inappropriate tasks for school counselors.

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In 1997, the National Standards for School Counseling Programs (Campbell & Dahir, 1997) and the Transforming School Counseling Initiative (TSCI; The Education Trust, n.d.; Sears, 1999) were introduced nationally and have emerged as current trends in school counseling. We conducted this research to determine the degree of emphasis that professional school counselors and school principals believe school counselors should give to the National Standards and the TSCI domains. We also were interested in comparing responses between elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals. Thus, the study addressed three research questions:

1. How are elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals alike or different in their perceptions about the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to the National Standards for School Counseling Programs?

2. How are elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals alike or different in their perceptions about appropriate tasks for school counselors?

3. How are elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals alike or different in their perceptions about the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to the TSCI domains?

NATIONAL STANDARDS FOR SCHOOL COUNSELING PROGRAMS

According to Dahir (2001), the National Standards for School Counseling Programs were created in response to the omission of school counselors from the educational reform agenda and to inform school counselors and school administrators about comprehensive school counseling programs. There are three areas of emphasis (i.e., domains): (a) Academic Development, (b) Career Development, and (c) Personal/Social Development. There are a total of nine standards, three for each domain. These standards are further broken down into examples of competencies that students "should know and be able to do as a result of participating in a school counseling program" (Campbell & Dahir, 1997, p.1). Comprehensive school counseling program models have been developed by at least 24 states (Sink & MacDonald, 1998), and over 400 schools or districts in the United States have program models based on the National Standards (Dahir). The National Standards have been endorsed by many national professional organizations including the American School Counselor Association (ASCA), the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), and the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP).

TSCI DOMAINS

Along with ASCA, the American Counseling Association (ACA), and the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (ACES), The Education Trust has been recognized as one of the "key players" in the future of school counseling by the National Association of College Admissions Counseling (NACAC; Ford, 2000; NACAC Launches Dialogues, 2000; NACAC Organizes, 2000). Leaders from The Education Trust worked closely with the joint Task Force between ASCA and b ACES that looked into the future of school counseling and school counselor preparation (IL House, personal communication August 28, 2000; Dahir & Goldberg, 2000). During the past several years, The Education Trust leadership has offered professional development to school counselors in over 25 states, to state department personnel in 7 states to revise guidelines for certification and licensure, and to attendees at the ASCA and NASSP national conferences.

In 1997, The Education Trust, underwritten by the DeWitt Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund, introduced the Transforming School Counseling Initiative and developed a working definition of the New Vision School Counselor. This work has recently been expanded with the implementation of the MctLife National School Counselor Training Initiative (The Education Trust, n.d.). Although primarily focused on academic achievement, the definition also includes assisting students in their social, emotional, and personal development. Beyond this is recognition of the role of the school counselor in helping to bring about educational equity, reducing the barriers to academic success, and closing the achievement gap between poor and minority youth and their more privileged peers. In order to achieve these goals, the school counselor is expected to engage in activities along five domains: Leadership, Advocacy, Teaming and Collaboration, Counseling and Coordination, and Assessment and Use of Data (The Education Trust; Sears, 1999). The Education Trust has identified specific examples of what school counselors should do to implement each of these domains into their school counseling programs.

The Education Trust's TSCI also calls for school counselors to move away from what they term the present focus of school counseling toward the New Vision: away from mental health providers toward an academic/student achievement focus; from individual students' concerns to whole school and system concerns; from record keepers to the use of data to effect change; from guardians of the status quo to agents for change, especially for educational equity for all students (House & Martin, 1998). This shift in focus away from mental health towards academic achievement has not been embraced by all school counseling professionals (Guerra, 1998). However, the National Standards and TSCI are not mutually exclusive. ASCA past president Canary Hogan has been noted as saying that The Education Trust's model is congruent with ASCA's definition of the school counselor's role (Guerra). According to Dahir and House (2001), it is possible for school counselors to meet the requirements of both the National Standards and TSCI.

THE ASCA NATIONAL MODEL

Notably, the National Standards and the TSCI domains have been incorporated into The ASCA National Model: A Framework for School Counseling Programs (ASCA, 2003). The ASCA National Model was created to help school counselors develop their own comprehensive school counseling programs consistent with the latest educational reform movements. There are four elements of the National Model: Foundation, Delivery System, Management Systems, and Accountability. While the National Standards are part of the foundation of the model, ASCA collaborated with The Education Trust in order to include concepts from TSCI within the four themes of leadership, advocacy, collaboration, and systemic change. In addition, school counselors as users of data is integrated into the model.

SCHOOL PRINCIPALS

In addition to these forces shaping the role of the school counselor on a national level, school principals help determine the role of the school counselor on a local level (Dahir, 2000). There exists a substantial amount of literature dating back several decades about the importance of the school principal in defining the school counselor's role (Ponec & Brock, 2000). Much of this literature is concerned with the lack of agreement between school principals and school counselors on this topic (e.g., Bonebrake & Borgers, 1984; Kaplan, 1995; Podemski & Childers, 1982; Remley & Albright, 1988). Historically, the school principal will directly influence the role of the school counselor, regardless of whether this role definition is endorsed by professional associations such as ASCA (Dietz, 1972; Paisley & Borders, 1995). For this reason, school administrators have been identified as a possible challenge or barrier to transforming the school counselor role (House & Martin, 1998). Dahir states that ASCA and NASSP agree that the success of a school counseling program is dependent upon the principal's support at the building level. Therefore, even though NASSP and NAESP have endorsed the use of the National Standards, local school administrators mediate the implementation of the two initiatives. As such, it is important to determine the extent to which individual principals endorse the National Standards and the TSCI domains.

METHOD

Participants

A random sample of 1000 professional school counselors was generated by ASCA from the ASCA membership database. A random sample of 500 NASSP members and 500 NAESP members was generated and purchased from MGI Lists, the official mailing list managers for NASSP and NAESP. All 50 states were represented in each of the samples. The respondents indicated represented schools in urban (ASCA 20.4%; NASSP 18.5%; NAESP 23.9%), suburban (ASCA 45.4%; NASSP 42.2%; NAESP 39.0%), and rural (ASCA 29.9%; NASSP 34.1%; NAESP 29.4%) districts. Most of the respondents indicated that they had more than 300 students in their counselor caseload (ASCA 61.5%; NASSP 49.0%; NAESP 75.2%), and most had fewer than 50% of their students participating in the free or reduced lunch program (ASCA 65.8%; NASSP 75.9%; NAESP 67.9%). The number of years as a professional in their respective fields ranged from 0 to 35 years, and the number of years as a member of their respective professional organization ranged from 0 to 45 years. While a plurality of respondents had from 0 to 5 years experience as a professional in their respective field (ASCA 42.8%; NASSP 42.6%; NAESP 37.2%), many had more than 11 years experience (ASCA 32.8%; NASSP 26.5%; NAESP 33.9%). Respondents also varied in the number of years as members of their respective association from 0-5 years (ASCA 62.9%; NASSP 36.1%; NAESP 34.9%) to over 11 years (ASCA 12.6%; NASSP 30.1%; NAESP 31.2%).

For the purpose of statistical analyses, respondents were categorized according to the grade levels they served. Those who worked with students in any grade level from K-6 were categorized as serving elementary, and those who worked with students in any grade level from 7-12 were categorized as secondary. Of those respondents indicating grade level, there were 218 elementary school counselors, 376 secondary school counselors, 207 elementary school principals, and 231 secondary school principals.

Procedure

Using the Total Design Method (Dillman, 1978), questionnaires were mailed to 1,000 ASCA members, 500 NASSP members, and 500 NAESP members. After one week, a postcard reminder was sent. Three weeks later, a second mailing was sent to all those who had not yet responded. Due to a relatively slower return rate, a third mailing was sent to NASSP and NAESP members who had not yet responded. A total of 636 (63.6%) questionnaires were returned from ASCA members, 255 (51.0%) from NASSP members, and 220 (44.0%) from NAESP members.

Instrument

Two sections on the questionnaire were related to the National Standards. In the first section, all nine standards were used as stem items. Respondents were asked to rate each standard on a scale of 1 to 5 (1 = no emphasis, 2 = limited emphasis, 3 = moderate emphasis, 4 = more emphasis, 5 = most emphasis) indicating the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to each standard by school counselors. In the second section, appropriate school counseling program tasks and inappropriate non-school counseling program tasks as listed in Campbell and Dahir (1997) were used as the stem items. Respondents were asked to indicate whether they believed the task is appropriate or inappropriate for school counselors by placing a circle around yes or no. ASCA members also were asked to place a check in a column if they currently performed this task. Stem items in these two sections were reviewed and revised by one of the authors of the National Standards.

The third section on the questionnaire contained 18 stem items taken from literature distributed by The Education Trust (n.d.). These stem items were reviewed and revised by the program specialist and senior program manager who authored the document. These stem items consisted of the TSCI five domains and examples of what counselors might do to implement these domains into their school counseling programs. Respondents were asked to use the same scale (1 to 5) to indicate the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to each task by school counselors.

RESULTS

Because Likert-type scores can be considered an ordinal level of measurement (Huck, 2000), nonparametric procedures were employed to test for group differences between elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals. In all cases, a Kruskal-Wallace H test (one-way ANOVA of ranks) was used as the omnibus test, followed by pair-wise comparisons using the Mann-Whitney U test. For the Kruskal-Wallace test, a significance level of .05 was used, and for the Mann-Whitney test a Bonferonni adjusted significance level of .0083 (.05/6) was used to control for Type I error.

1. How are elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals alike or different in their perceptions about the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to the National Standards for School Counseling Programs?

Mean, standard deviations and rankings for the National Standards stem items can be seen in Table 1. With only three exceptions, school counselors and principals at each level responded that school counselors should ideally give emphasis to all nine of the National Standards (i.e., rating of at least 4.00). The highest ranked stem item for elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, and elementary school principals was "Students will acquire the attitudes, knowledge, and interpersonal skills to help them understand and respect self and others." Secondary school principals rated this stem item second highest. The highest ranked stem item for secondary school principals was "Students will complete school with the academic preparation essential to choose from a wide range of substantial postsecondary options, including college." The lowest rated item for elementary school counselors and elementary school principals was "Students will employ strategies to achieve future career success and satisfaction." The lowest rated item for secondary school counselors and secondary school principals was "Students will understand safety and survival skills."

Results from the Kruskal-Wallis test revealed significant differences between the means for all four groups on all except three of the National Standards stem items. Pair-wise comparisons using Mann-Whitney U were conducted between elementary school counselors and secondary school counselors, elementary school counselors and elementary school principals, and secondary school counselors and secondary school principals. Elementary and secondary school counselors differed across all of the personal/social development standards, with elementary school counselors rating each of them significantly higher than secondary school counselors. On the other hand, secondary school counselors rated one of each academic development and career development standard as significantly higher than did elementary school counselors. There were no significant differences between elementary school counselors and elementary school principals. Secondary school counselors rated three stems significantly higher than secondary school principals: Career Development Standards A and C, and Personal/Social Development Standard C.

2. How are elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals alike or different in their perceptions about appropriate tasks for school counselors?

The percent of respondents indicating that a given task is appropriate for school counselors and the percent of school counselors performing each task can be seen in Table 2. The only non-significant difference among all four groups was for the stem item "Assisting the school principal with identifying and resolving student issues, needs, and problems." Appropriate tasks that received the lowest endorsements from at least two groups included: "counseling students as to appropriate school dress;" "analyzing grade point average in relation to achievement;" "providing teachers with suggestions for better management of study halls;" and "ensuring student records are maintained as per state and federal regulations." The extent to which school counselors performed these appropriate tasks varied by level. For example, lower numbers of school counselors at each level counseled students as to appropriate school dress (41.3% of elementary school counselors, 31.6% of secondary school counselors) or provided teachers with suggestions for better management of study halls (15.6% of elementary school counselors, 9.3% of secondary school counselors). However, when compared with elementary school counselors, more secondary school counselors indicated that they analyzed grade-point averages in relation to achievement (19.3% of elementary school counselors, 57.7% of secondary school counselors) and ensured student records were maintained per state and federal regulations (27.5% of elementary school counselors, 61.4% of secondary school counselors).

More than 80% of secondary school principals identified the following inappropriate tasks as appropriate: "registration and scheduling of all new students;" "administering cognitive, aptitude, and achievement tests;" and "maintaining student records." Close to 50% of school counselors at each level also identified administering cognitive, aptitude, and achievement tests as appropriate. Whether school counselors performed these inappropriate tasks varied by level. With the exception of three inappropriate tasks, more secondary school counselors indicated that they performed these tasks as compared to elementary school counselors. The top three inappropriate tasks which secondary school counselors performed were the same as those endorsed by more than 80% of secondary school principals: "registration and scheduling of all new students" (81.1%); "administering cognitive, aptitude, and achievement tests" (66.5%); and "maintaining student records" (63.0%). The top three inappropriate tasks for elementary school counselors were also the top three endorsed as appropriate by elementary school principals: "administering cognitive, aptitude, and achievement tests" (39.9%); "assisting with duties in the principal's office" (30.3%); and "maintaining student records" (22.9%).

3. How are elementary school counselors, secondary school counselors, elementary school principals, and secondary school principals alike or different in their perceptions about the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to the TSCI domains?

Mean, standard deviations, and rankings for the TSCI stem items are presented in Table 3. Ten (52.6%) of the 19 stems were rated as a 4.00 or higher across all four groups. Results from the Kruskal-Wallis test revealed significant differences between the means for all four groups on all except four of the TSCI stem items. Pair-wise comparisons using Mann-Whitney U were conducted. Comparisons between elementary school counselors and secondary school counselors showed significant differences on 10 stem items. Comparisons between elementary school counselors and elementary school principals showed significant differences on six stem items, and comparisons between secondary school counselors and secondary school principals revealed significant differences on seven stem items. These significant differences are shown in Table 3.

As was the case with the national standards, there were significant differences between all four groups about the degree of emphasis that should ideally be given to each of the five domain stem items. There were more significant differences between elementary school counselors and secondary school counselors than between school counselors and school principals at each level. Despite these differences, the top three stem items across all four groups were the same: "Play a leadership role in defining and carrying out guidance and counseling functions;" "Brief counseling with individual students, groups, and families;" "Promote, plan, and implement schoolwide prevention programs, career/college activities, course selection and placement, social/personal management and decision making activities." The lowest three are not as clearly agreed upon across all four groups. One stem item was ranked as 18 or 19 across all four groups: "Provide snapshots of student outcomes, show implications, achievement gaps, and provide leadership for school to view." Other stem items receiving a position of 17, 18, or 19 by at least three groups were: "Make available and use data to help the whole school look at student outcomes" and "Coordinate staff training initiatives to address students' needs on a school-wide basis." "Use data to effect change, utilizing resources from the school and community" was ranked 17 by secondary school principals; and "Interpret student data for use in school-wide planning for change" was ranked 17 by elementary school counselors.

DISCUSSION

As with all self-report questionnaires, these data must be interpreted with caution. It is possible that only respondents with strong feelings, either positive or negative, about the National Standards and the TSCI domains replied to our request. These limitations may affect generalization of the results. However, our sample does benefit from having ASCA, NASSP, and NAESP members representing schools with various counselor to student ratios; varying degrees office and reduced lunch programs; and communities in urban, suburban, and rural school districts. School counselors and school principals ranged in years of employment and years as a member of their respective professional organizations from a few months to over 30 years of experience and professional membership.

National Standards

These data on the National Standards stem items are consistent with Dahir, Campbell, Johnson, Scholes, and Valiga (1997). In their survey of ASCA members, which was conducted to help identify and establish the National Standards, they round that high school and elementary school counselors responded with significant difference on several stem items. Elementary school counselors showed greater support for the personal/social development domain while high school counselors showed a greater interest in the career development domain. Our data goes further to suggest that, not only are elementary and secondary school counselors significantly different from each other on many stem items, but they are more different from each other than they are from their respective school principals.

Appropriate and Inappropriate Tasks

The National Standards for School Counseling Programs gives examples of what are appropriate and inappropriate tasks for school counselors. Our data show that there is not clear agreement from school counselors or school principals about what are appropriate or inappropriate tasks for school counselors. There is also a discrepancy between what the National Standards identify as appropriate and inappropriate tasks, and what school counselors and school principals identify as appropriate and inappropriate tasks. With regard to the performance by school counselors of various inappropriate tasks, our data showed that the exact same tasks that were most highly endorsed by school principals at each level were also the most frequently performed inappropriate tasks by school counselors at each level. This may lend support to the belief that school principals influence which tasks are performed by school counselors at each level.

In 1970, Hart and Prince investigated the training versus job demands of school counselors. They surveyed secondary school principals in the state of Utah and compared their answers with six counselor educators from different areas of the country. The principals disagreed with the counselor educators on factors of clerical duties, working with students who have personal-emotional problems, and confidentiality. The principals believed that it was the counselor's responsibility to perform clerical duties such as class changes; registration; attendance checking; and fill-in as an assistant, monitor, or teacher.

Our research conducted 30 years later, reveals that most school principals continue to believe that appropriate tasks for school counselors include clerical tasks such as registration and scheduling of all new students; administering cognitive, aptitude, and achievement tests; and maintaining student records. Coy (1999) bas cautioned that:

Equally as important, professional school counselors must also be clear about what are appropriate tasks for school counselors. They must define their roles, so that school principals will not define their roles for them (House & Martin, 1998).

Transforming School Counseling Initiative

Stem items rated among the three lowest included all four stem items containing the word data and three out of the four stems containing the phrase school-wide or whole school. These results are consistent with data collected from counselor educators on a similar survey about the extent to which their methods of instruction focused on the TSCI domains. Perusse and Goodnough (2001) found that counselor educators also rated two of the stem items containing the term school-wide and both stem items containing the word data among the three lowest rated stems. Systemic whole school change and the use of data are essential components of the Education Trust's New Vision for school counselors. They have argued that school counselors must move toward whole school and system concerns and use data to effect change in the schools towards educational equity for all students and become accountable for student success (The Education Trust, n.d.). Our data suggest that most counselors and principals do not accept these systemic whole school goals as central to the school counselor's role.

IMPLICATIONS AND FUTURE RESEARCH

On all sections of the questionnaire, elementary school counselors and secondary school counselors differed from each other more frequently than elementary school counselors versus elementary school principals and secondary school counselors versus secondary school principals. Elementary school counselors and elementary school principals showed no significant differences on the National Standards stem items. Because principals play such an important role in determining the role of the school counselor at the local level, this is encouraging news for elementary school counselors. Like the Dahir et al. (1997) study, our research raises questions about the distinctiveness of elementary and secondary school counseling programs. As such, there may be varying degrees of acceptance of the National Standards and TSCI by school counselors from each level. Their data and ours suggest that there may be a need to further investigate differences between high school, elementary, and middle/junior high school counseling programs.

Differences between school counselors at various levels may have implications for pre-service preparation and state certification for school counselors. For example, according to Ballard and Murgatroyd (1999), counselor educators may be focusing on the needs of secondary school counselors. Hosie and Mackey (1985) surveyed counselor educators to investigate the difference between elementary and secondary school counselor training. They found that 47% of respondents believed that their programs were "significantly different" for elementary and secondary school counselors. In their survey about school counselor education programs, Perusse, Goodnough, and Noel (2001a) round that out of 189 programs, 27 (14.3%) had a course specifically for elementary school counseling, and 26 (13.8%) had a course specifically for secondary school counseling.

It seems reasonable that a certain amount of agreement between the National Standards, TSCI, what school counselors do, what school principals expect from school counselors, and what counselor educators are teaching is necessary in order for the profession to move forward. On the other hand, as can be seen in these data, agreement among school counselors and school principals regarding whole school intervention and the use of data to effect change may not necessarily be in the direction of TSCI. Perusse, Goodnough, and Noel (2001b) and Perusse and Goodnough (2001) found that there are also varying degrees of use by counselor educators of the National Standards and the TSCI domains in pro-service education.

Continued public awareness campaigns directed towards NASSP and NAESP members may foster consensus between school counselors and school principals about the role of the school counselor. However, public awareness campaigns might also be directed to professional school counselors. As one school counselor indicated on the questionnaire: "This is the first time I've heard about the Education Trust domains. I'd like to be better informed."

Thirty years ago, Hart and Prince (1970) raised the question whether the training of counselors is too idealistic and whether training and role definition of school counselors should reflect real job demands from school principals. This question remains relevant today. That is, given the lack of agreement from professional school counselors, school principals, and counselor educators vis-a-vis the National Standards and TSCI, how should the future direction of the school counseling profession be determined? Further investigations might be focused on ways these stakeholders can work together towards a unified vision for professional school counseling.

References

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Dahir, C. A., & Goldberg, A. (2000, Spring). Joining forces: ASCA and ACES address the future of school counseling. ACES Spectrum, 60, 2-3.

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Dillman, D. (1978). Mail and telephone surveys: The total design method. New York: Wiley.

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Huck, S. W. (2000). Reading statistics and research (3rd ed.). New York: Longman.

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NACAC launches dialogues on school counseling. (2000, January). NACAC Bulletin, 38(1), pp. 1, 5.

NACAC organizes first-ever school counseling symposium. (2000, May). NACAC Bulletin, 38(5), pp. 1, 5-6.

Paisley, P. O., & Borders, L. D. (1995). School counseling: An evolving specialty. Journal of Counseling and Development, 74, 150-154.

Perusse, R., & Goodnough, G. E. (2001). A comparison of existing school counselor program content with The Education Trust initiatives. Counselor Education and Supervision, 41, 100-110.

Perusse, R., Goodnough, G. E., & Noel, C. (2001a). A national survey of school counselor preparation programs: Screening methods, faculty experiences, curricular content, and fieldwork requirements. Counselor Education and Supervision, 40, 252-262.

Perusse, R., Goodnough, G. E., & Noel, C. (2001b). Use of the national standards for school counseling programs in preparing school counselors. Professional School Counseling, 5, 49-55.

Podemski, R. S., & Childers, J. H., Jr. (1982). Psychological contracting for the counselor's role: Procedures for counselors and principals. The School Counselor, 29, 183-189.

Ponec, D. L., & Brock, B. L. (2000). Relationships among elementary school counselors and principals: A unique bond. Professional School Counseling, 3, 208-217.

Remley, T. P., Jr., & Albright, P. L. (1988). Expectations for middle school counselors: Views of students, teachers, principals, and parents. The School Counselor, 35, 290-296.

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Rachelle Perusse, Ph.D., is an associate professor Counselor Education Department, Plattsburgh State University of New York. E-mail:: perussr@plattsburgh.edu.

Gary E. Goodnough, Ph.D., is an associate professor of Counselor Edu ation at Plymouth State University, Plymouth, NH.

Jenn Donegan is a school counselor at Lyme Central School in Chamount, NY.

Candice Jones is a school counselor at Keene Central School in Keene, NY.

The authors acknowledge the assistance of Carol A. Dahir, Reese M. House, and Patricia J. Martin in the preparation of the survey instrument. This research was funded by the State of New York/ UUP Affirmative Action/Diversity Committee.
The school counselor has the skills and
   knowledge for providing counseling, coordination,
   guidance and referrals within the total
   framework of the educational system. To ask
   these individuals to use their skills and knowledge
   simply to make schedule changes and
   test is a misuse of their education. (p. 7)


Table 1. The Perceived Degree of Emphasis That Should Ideally be Given
to Each National Standard by School Counselors

                                                 School Counselors

                                                     Elementary

Standard                                    M               SD      R

Academic Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.41.sub.a]     .75    3
knowledge, and skills that contribute to
effective learning in school and across
the life span.
B. Students will complete school with       [4.04.sub.a]     .91    8
the academic preparation essential to
choose from a wide range of substantial
postsecondary options, including
college.
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.27.sub.a]     .77    5
tionship of academics to the world of
work, and to life at home and in the
community

Career Development
A. Students will acquire the skills to      [4.14.sub.a]     .84    7
investigate the world of work in rela-
tion to knowledge of self & make infor-
med career decisions
B. Students will employ strategies to       [3.98.sub.a]     .88    9
achieve future career success and satis-
faction
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.32.sub.a]     .80    4
tionship between personal qualities,
education and training, and the world of
work

Personal/Social Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.91.sub.a]     .31    1
knowledge, and interpersonal skills to
help them understand and respect self
and others
B. Students will make decisions, set        [4.65.sub.a]     .57    2
goals, and take necessary action to
  achieve goals
C. Students will understand safety and      [4.26.sub.a]     .83    6
survival skills

                                                 School Counselors

                                                     Secondary

Standard                                    M               SD      R

Academic Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.25.sub.a]     .83    7
knowledge, and skills that contribute to
effective learning in school and across
the life span.
B. Students will complete school with       [4.43.sub.b]     .70    3
the academic preparation essential to
choose from a wide range of substantial
postsecondary options, including
college.
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.35.sub.a]     .73    6
tionship of academics to the world of
work, and to life at home and in the
community

Career Development
A. Students will acquire the skills to      [4.40.sub.b]     .70    4
investigate the world of work in rela-
tion to knowledge of self & make infor-
med career decisions
B. Students will employ strategies to       [4.11.sub.a]     .77    8
achieve future career success and satis-
faction
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.39.sub.a]     .71    5
tionship between personal qualities,
education and training, and the world of
work

Personal/Social Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.57.sub.b]     .63    1
knowledge, and interpersonal skills to
help them understand and respect self
and others
B. Students will make decisions, set        [4.43.sub.b]     .69    2
goals, and take necessary action to
  achieve goals
C. Students will understand safety and      [3.82.sub.b]     .97    9
survival skills

                                                 School Principals

                                                     Elementary

Standard                                    M               SD      R

Academic Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.46.sub.a]     .82    3
knowledge, and skills that contribute to
effective learning in school and across
the life span.
B. Students will complete school with       [4.14.sub.a]     .92    7
the academic preparation essential to
choose from a wide range of substantial
postsecondary options, including
college.
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.28.sub.a]     .79    6
tionship of academics to the world of
work, and to life at home and in the
community

Career Development
A. Students will acquire the skills to      [4.06.sub.a]     .83    8
investigate the world of work in rela-
tion to knowledge of self & make infor-
med career decisions
B. Students will employ strategies to       [4.03.sub.a]     .81    9
achieve future career success and satis-
faction
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.35.sub.a]     .75    4
tionship between personal qualities,
education and training, and the world of
work

Personal/Social Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.82.sub.a]     .41    1
knowledge, and interpersonal skills to
help them understand and respect self
and others
B. Students will make decisions, set        [4.66.sub.a]     .54    2
goals, and take necessary action to
  achieve goals
C. Students will understand safety and      [4.33.sub.a]     .84    5
survival skills

                                                 School Principals

                                                     Secondary

Standard                                    M               SD      R

Academic Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.18.sub.a]     .85    7
knowledge, and skills that contribute to
effective learning in school and across
the life span.
B. Students will complete school with       [4.45.sub.b]     .77    1
the academic preparation essential to
choose from a wide range of substantial
postsecondary options, including
college.
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.27.sub.a]     .73    4
tionship of academics to the world of
work, and to life at home and in the
community

Career Development
A. Students will acquire the skills to      [4.20.sub.c]     .76    5.5
investigate the world of work in rela-
tion to knowledge of self & make infor-
med career decisions
B. Students will employ strategies to       [4.06.sub.a]     .76    8
achieve future career success and satis-
faction
C. Students will understand the rela-       [4.20.sub.b]     .81    5.5
tionship between personal qualities,
education and training, and the world of
work

Personal/Social Development
A. Students will acquire the attitudes,     [4.36.sub.b]     .86    2
knowledge, and interpersonal skills to
help them understand and respect self
and others
B. Students will make decisions, set        [4.30.sub.b]     .79    3
goals, and take necessary action to
  achieve goals
C. Students will understand safety and      [3.57.sub.c]    1.07    9
survival skills

Note. R = Rank as derived from the Mean. Means with different
subscripts in the same row are significantly different at p < .0083 in
the Mann-Whitney U test for comparisons between elementary versus
secondary school counselors, elementary school counselors versus
elementary school principals, and secondary school counselors versus
secondary school principals.

Table 2. Percent of Respondents Who Indicated That the Following Tasks
Were Appropriate for School Counselors and the Percent of School
Counselors Who Perform Each Task

                                          School Counselors

Task                                      Elementary      Secondary

Appropriate School Counseling
Program Tasks
Individual student academic program       [82.3.sub.a]    [95.4.sub.b]
  planning
Interpreting cognitive, aptitude, and     [80.8.sub.a]    [93.2.sub.b]
  achievement tests
Counseling students who are tardy or      [89.9.sub.a]    [76.2.sub.b]
  absent
Collaborating with teachers to present    [96.8.sub.a]    [91.6.sub.a]
  guidance curriculum lessons
Counseling students who have              [96.3.sub.a]    [86.7.sub.b]
  disciplinary problems
Counseling students as to appropriate     [59.0.sub.a]    [41.9.sub.b]
  school dress
Analyzing grade-point averages in         [56.9.sub.a]    [78.1.sub.b]
  relationship to achievement
Interpreting student records              [84.5.sub.a]    [95.9.sub.b]
Providing teachers with suggestions       [57.3.sub.a]    [26.6.sub.b]
  for better management of study halls
Ensuring student records are main-        [31.2.sub.a]    [60.3.sub.b]
  tained as per state and federal
  regulations
Assisting the school principal with       [99.5.sub.a]    [98.6.sub.a]
  identifying and resolving student
  issues, needs, and problems

Inappropriate non-school counseling
program tasks
Registration and scheduling of all new    [28.8.sub.a]    [75.5.sub.b]
  students
Administering cognitive, aptitude, and    [48.1.sub.a]    [55.4.sub.a]
  achievement tests
Responsibility for signing excuses for     [0.5.sub.a]     [2.2.sub.a]
  students who are tardy or absent
Teaching classes when teachers are         [4.2.sub.a]     [3.3.sub.a]
  absent
Performing disciplinary actions            [4.6.sub.a]     [2.2.sub.a]
Sending students home who are not          [5.1.sub.a]     [1.6.sub.a]
  appropriately dressed
Computing grade-point averages             [6.1.sub.a]    [24.9.sub.b]
Maintaining student records               [25.5.sub.a]    [57.8.sub.b]
Supervising study halls                    [2.3.sub.a]     [1.6.sub.a]
Clerical record keeping                    [5.5.sub.a]     [9.5.sub.a]
Assisting with duties in the princi-      [10.3.sub.a]     [6.0.sub.a]
  pal's office

                                          School Principals

Task                                      Elementary      Secondary

Appropriate School Counseling
Program Tasks
Individual student academic program       [82.8.sub.a]     [98.7.sub.b]
  planning
Interpreting cognitive, aptitude, and     [88.2.sub.a]     [97.8.sub.b]
  achievement tests
Counseling students who are tardy or      [89.3.sub.a]     [78.8.sub.b]
  absent
Collaborating with teachers to present    [98.5.sub.a]     [97.0.sub.a]
  guidance curriculum lessons
Counseling students who have              [93.6.sub.a]     [89.9.sub.b]
  disciplinary problems
Counseling students as to appropriate     [74.0.sub.c]     [67.7.sub.c]
  school dress
Analyzing grade-point averages in         [62.6.sub.a]     [91.3.sub.c]
  relationship to achievement
Interpreting student records              [78.7.sub.a]     [98.7.sub.b]
Providing teachers with suggestions       [49.5.sub.a]     [28.8.sub.b]
  for better management of study halls
Ensuring student records are main-        [54.3.sub.b]     [83.5.sub.c]
  tained as per state and federal
  regulations
Assisting the school principal with       [98.5.sub.a]    [100.0.sub.a]
  identifying and resolving student
  issues, needs, and problems

Inappropriate non-school counseling
program tasks
Registration and scheduling of all new    [40.2.sub.a]     [86.8.sub.c]
  students
Administering cognitive, aptitude, and    [62.4.sub.b]     [87.0.sub.c]
  achievement tests
Responsibility for signing excuses for     [6.5.sub.b]      [4.8.sub.a]
  students who are tardy or absent
Teaching classes when teachers are        [14.9.sub.b]     [15.O.sub.b]
  absent
Performing disciplinary actions            [9.4.sub.a]      [3.5.sub.a]
Sending students home who are not         [10.9.sub.a]      [9.1.sub.b]
  appropriately dressed
Computing grade-point averages            [13.9.sub.b]     [49.6.sub.c]
Maintaining student records               [43.3.sub.b]     [82.1.sub.c]
Supervising study halls                    [7.9.sub.a]      [4.8.sub.a]
Clerical record keeping                    [8.0.sub.a]     [18.9.sub.b]
Assisting with duties in the princi-      [25.3.sub.b]     [20.6.sub.b]
  pal's office

                                          School Counselors
                                          Who Perform
                                          This Task

Task                                      Elementary      Secondary

Appropriate School Counseling
Program Tasks
Individual student academic program       20.6            81.9
  planning
Interpreting cognitive, aptitude, and     50.5            75.0
  achievement tests
Counseling students who are tardy or      66.1            69.1
  absent
Collaborating with teachers to present    82.1            53.2
  guidance curriculum lessons
Counseling students who have              87.2            76.3
  disciplinary problems
Counseling students as to appropriate     41.3            31.6
  school dress
Analyzing grade-point averages in         19.3            57.7
  relationship to achievement
Interpreting student records              65.6            83.8
Providing teachers with suggestions       15.6             9.3
  for better management of study halls
Ensuring student records are main-        27.5            61.4
  tained as per state and federal
  regulations
Assisting the school principal with       90.4            81.4
  identifying and resolving student
  issues, needs, and problems

Inappropriate non-school counseling
program tasks
Registration and scheduling of all new    10.1            81.1
  students
Administering cognitive, aptitude, and    39.9            66.5
  achievement tests
Responsibility for signing excuses for     2.8             6.6
  students who are tardy or absent
Teaching classes when teachers are        22.0            17.8
  absent
Performing disciplinary actions           17.0             8.5
Sending students home who are not          3.2             3.7
  appropriately dressed
Computing grade-point averages             3.7            35.4
Maintaining student records               22.9            63.0
Supervising study halls                    4.1             6.9
Clerical record keeping                   19.3            37.6
Assisting with duties in the princi-      30.3            18.6
  pal's office

Note. Means with different subscripts in the same row are significantly
different at p < .0083 in the Mann-Whitney U test for comparisons
between elementary versus secondary school counselors, elementary
school counselors versus elementary school principals, and secondary
school counselors versus secondary school principals.

Table 3. The Perceived Degree of Emphasis That Should Ideally be Given
to Each of the Five Domains by School Counselors

                                                School Counselors

Task                                                Elementary

                                                M           SD      R

Leadership
Promote, plan & implement school-wide      [4.44.sub.a]     .74     3
  prevention programs, career/college
  activities, course selection & place-
  ment, social/personal management &
  decision making activities
Provide data snapshots of student out-     [3.07.sub.a]    1.02    19
  comes, show implications, achievement
  gaps, & provide leadership for school
  to view
Arrange in-school mentoring relation-      [3.74.sub.a]     .99    14.5
  ships to improve students' academic
  success
Play a leadership role in defining and     [4.83.sub.a]     .44     2
  carrying out guidance and counseling
  functions
Advocacy
Make available and use data to help the    [3.40.sub.a]    1.06    18
  whole school look at student outcomes
Use data to effect change, utilizing       [3.58.sub.a]     .93    16
  resources from school and community
Advocate for student experiences &         [4.08.sub.a]     .78    11
  exposures to broaden students' career
  awareness and knowledge
Advocate for students' placement &         [4.18.sub.a]     .77     8
  school support for rigorous prepara-
  tion for all students--especially
  poor and minority youth
Teaming and Collaboration
Consult with teams of teachers/educa-      [4.41.sub.a]     .71     4
  tors for problem solving; ensuring
  responsiveness to equity & cultural
  diversity issues
Collaborate with school and community      [3.98.sub.a]     .89    12
  teams to focus on rewards, incentives
  and support for student achievement
Collaborate within school to develop       [4.26.sub.a]     .84     5
  staff training on team responses to
  students' academic, social, emotio-
  nal, and developmental needs
Counseling and Coordination
Brief counseling with individual stu-      [4.86.sub.a]     .38     1
  dents, groups, and families
Coordinate resources, human and other,     [4.24.sub.a]     .84     7
  for students and staff to improve
  student achievement
Key liaison working with students and      [4.13.sub.a]     .94     9
  school staff to set and support high
  aspirations for all students
Coordinate staff training initiatives      [3.74.sub.a]     .97    14.5
  to address students' needs on a
  school-wide basis
Assessment and Use of Data
Assess and interpret student needs,        [4.12.sub.a]     .86    10
  with sensitivity toward cultural
  differences
Establish and assess measurable goals      [4.24.sub.a]     .83     6
  for student outcomes from counseling
  activities & interventions
Assess school conditions that impede       [3.96.sub.a]     .89    13
  learning, inclusion, and/or students'
  academic success
Interpret student data for use in          [3.56.sub.a]     .94    17
  school-wide planning for change

                                                School Counselors

Task                                                Secondary

                                                M           SD      R

Leadership
Promote, plan & implement school-wide         4.53a         .67     3
  prevention programs, career/college
  activities, course selection & place-
  ment, social/personal management &
  decision making activities
Provide data snapshots of student out-        3.14a        1.01    19
  comes, show implications, achievement
  gaps, & provide leadership for school
  to view
Arrange in-school mentoring relation-         3.59a         .94    14
  ships to improve students' academic
  success
Play a leadership role in defining and        4.70b         .52     2
  carrying out guidance and counseling
  functions
Advocacy
Make available and use data to help the       3.43a        1.01    17
  whole school look at student outcomes
Use data to effect change, utilizing          3.56a         .92    16
  resources from school and community
Advocate for student experiences &            4.30b         .69     4
  exposures to broaden students' career
  awareness and knowledge
Advocate for students' placement &            4.28a         .79     5
  school support for rigorous prepara-
  tion for all students--especially
  poor and minority youth
Teaming and Collaboration
Consult with teams of teachers/educa-         4.08b         .86     8
  tors for problem solving; ensuring
  responsiveness to equity & cultural
  diversity issues
Collaborate with school and community         3.63b         .97    13
  teams to focus on rewards, incentives
  and support for student achievement
Collaborate within school to develop          4.04b         .90     9
  staff training on team responses to
  students' academic, social, emotio-
  nal, and developmental needs
Counseling and Coordination
Brief counseling with individual stu-         4.73b         .53     1
  dents, groups, and families
Coordinate resources, human and other,        3.98b         .89    11
  for students and staff to improve
  student achievement
Key liaison working with students and         4.10a         .80     7
  school staff to set and support high
  aspirations for all students
Coordinate staff training initiatives         3.36b        1.02    18
  to address students' needs on a
  school-wide basis
Assessment and Use of Data
Assess and interpret student needs,           4.10a         .87     6
  with sensitivity toward cultural
  differences
Establish and assess measurable goals         4.00b         .84    10
  for student outcomes from counseling
  activities & interventions
Assess school conditions that impede          3.74b         .95    12
  learning, inclusion, and/or students'
  academic success
Interpret student data for use in             3.57a         .98    15
  school-wide planning for change

                                                School Principals

Task                                                Elementary

                                                M           SD      R

Leadership
Promote, plan & implement school-wide         4.56a         .62     3
  prevention programs, career/college
  activities, course selection & place-
  ment, social/personal management &
  decision making activities
Provide data snapshots of student out-        3.62b         .97    19
  comes, show implications, achievement
  gaps, & provide leadership for school
  to view
Arrange in-school mentoring relation-         4.21b         .76     9
  ships to improve students' academic
  success
Play a leadership role in defining and        4.85a         .37     1
  carrying out guidance and counseling
  functions
Advocacy
Make available and use data to help the       3.86b         .93    17
  whole school look at student outcomes
Use data to effect change, utilizing          3.92b         .82    15
  resources from school and community
Advocate for student experiences &            4.17a         .76    10
  exposures to broaden students' career
  awareness and knowledge
Advocate for students' placement &            4.25a         .77     8
  school support for rigorous prepara-
  tion for all students--especially
  poor and minority youth
Teaming and Collaboration
Consult with teams of teachers/educa-         4.37a         .79     5
  tors for problem solving; ensuring
  responsiveness to equity & cultural
  diversity issues
Collaborate with school and community         4.08a         .92    14
  teams to focus on rewards, incentives
  and support for student achievement
Collaborate within school to develop          4.49b         .66     4
  staff training on team responses to
  students' academic, social, emotio-
  nal, and developmental needs
Counseling and Coordination
Brief counseling with individual stu-         4.77a         .45     2
  dents, groups, and families
Coordinate resources, human and other,        4.16a         .86    13
  for students and staff to improve
  student achievement
Key liaison working with students and         4.26a         .74     7
  school staff to set and support high
  aspirations for all students
Coordinate staff training initiatives         3.79a         .92    18
  to address students' needs on a
  school-wide basis
Assessment and Use of Data
Assess and interpret student needs,           4.17a         .76    11
  with sensitivity toward cultural
  differences
Establish and assess measurable goals         4.31a         .65     6
  for student outcomes from counseling
  activities & interventions
Assess school conditions that impede          4.16a         .80    12
  learning, inclusion, and/or students'
  academic success
Interpret student data for use in             3.89b         .89    16
  school-wide planning for change

                                                School Principals

Task                                                Secondary

                                                M           SD      R

Leadership
Promote, plan & implement school-wide         4.47a         .72     3
  prevention programs, career/college
  activities, course selection & place-
  ment, social/personal management &
  decision making activities
Provide data snapshots of student out-        3.76b         .90    18
  comes, show implications, achievement
  gaps, & provide leadership for school
  to view
Arrange in-school mentoring relation-         3.94b         .88    15
  ships to improve students' academic
  success
Play a leadership role in defining and        4.67b         .55     1
  carrying out guidance and counseling
  functions
Advocacy
Make available and use data to help the       4.00b         .90    13
  whole school look at student outcomes
Use data to effect change, utilizing          3.83b         .87    17
  resources from school and community
Advocate for student experiences &            4.22b         .73     5
  exposures to broaden students' career
  awareness and knowledge
Advocate for students' placement &            4.28a         .75     4
  school support for rigorous prepara-
  tion for all students- especially
  poor and minority youth
Teaming and Collaboration
Consult with teams of teachers/educa-         4.14b         .82     8
  tors for problem solving; ensuring
  responsiveness to equity & cultural
  diversity issues
Collaborate with school and community         3.85b         .90    16
  teams to focus on rewards, incentives
  and support for student achievement
Collaborate within school to develop          4.01b         .90    12
  staff training on team responses to
  students' academic, social, emotio-
  nal, and developmental needs
Counseling and Coordination
Brief counseling with individual stu-         4.60c         .62     2
  dents, groups, and families
Coordinate resources, human and other,        4.10b         .85     9
  for students and staff to improve
  student achievement
Key liaison working with students and         4.17a         .81     7
  school staff to set and support high
  aspirations for all students
Coordinate staff training initiatives         3.50b         .97    19
  to address students' needs on a
  school-wide basis
Assessment and Use of Data
Assess and interpret student needs,           4.10a         .78    10
  with sensitivity toward cultural
  differences
Establish and assess measurable goals         4.19b         .74     6
  for student outcomes from counseling
  activities & interventions
Assess school conditions that impede          3.96c         .85    14
  learning, inclusion, and/or students'
  academic success
Interpret student data for use in             4.03b         .84    11
  school-wide planning for change

Note. R = Rank as derived from the Mean. Means with different
subscripts in the same row are significantly different at p < .0083 in
the Mann-Whitney U test for comparisons between elementary versus
secondary school counselors, elementary school counselors versus
elementary school principals, and secondary school counselors versus
secondary school principals.
Gale Copyright: Copyright 2004 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.