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611 - Guidance Curriculum Beliefs and Goals: Social Work and Counseling

611 - Guidance Curriculum Beliefs and Goals: Social Work and Counseling

Adopted: January 1988
Revised: July 2012

Download 611 - Guidance Curriculum Beliefs and Goals: Social Work and Counseling

1. Social Work Beliefs (Grades K-5)

1.1 Children are increasingly impacted by social forces that affect their role as students.

1.2 A comprehensive K-5 school social work program is an essential and integral part of the overall education process.

1.3 Barriers to achievement for some students may exist within the child’s home, school and community.  Addressing these barriers can lead to the attainment of personal and social objectives.

1.4 School social workers coordinate with other educators, incorporating comprehensive curricula founded upon the psych-social development and needs of all children.

1.5 Working with other school staff, school social workers provide services to students and parents to improve school-community relations knowing the services provided will vary with the needs of the students.

1.6 The school social work program is a vital link between the home, community and school to educate and empower students and families to engage in the learning process and develop coping strategies.

1.7 All elementary students may have access to and be served through the school social work program.

1.8 The school social work program advocates dignity and respect for all students and families, taking into consideration ethnic, cultural and racial differences, as well as special needs, when planning and implementing services.

1.9 The school social work program is strength-based, proactive, preventative and family-centered.

1.10 It is important for all young people to acquire universal character traits such as honesty, empathy, integrity, respect and responsibility as part of their healthy development.

1.11 The school social work program is consistent with research-based developmental stages of learning.

1.12 Ongoing professional development and supervision are essential to maintain a quality school social work program.

1.13 School social workers adhere to the code of ethics and professional standards as prescribed by the Minnesota Board of Social Work, to include maintenance of appropriate boundaries, confidentiality and ethical decision-making.

2. Counseling Beliefs (Grades 6-12)

“…not every child enters the school doors each day ready to learn.  The school counselor services as a liaison for administrators, staff, and parents to help all children to reach their fullest potential.  An effective school counseling program permeates the school environment.”  - American School Counselor Association

2.1 Students who feel connected and supported are more attentive, organized and cognitively engaged in the classroom.

2.2 Access to responsive counseling services is vital to student achievement by providing appropriate academic placement, intervention, and retention.

2.3 Healthy students are able to work independently and cooperatively with others.

2.4 All students have gifts and skills that lend themselves to future careers or pathways.

2.5 Goal setting and post-high school planning is inclusive and enhanced through family support and community collaborations.

2.6 All students have the right to be served by school counselors who:

2.6.1 Provide community connections and referrals;

2.6.2 Implement proactive academic planning and personal interventions;

2.6.3 Foster interpersonal skill development, and

2.6.4 Teach life skills in order to retain and return healthy students to the classroom.

2.7 A quality counseling program requires support for:

2.7.1 Professional development to support best practices, and

2.7.2 Coordination with other educators and administrators to implement timely interventions.

3. Social Work Goals (Grades K-5)

3.1 Social and Emotional Development - Students will be able to acquire and demonstrate knowledge of the following skills:

3.1.1. Feelings identification, expression and management;

3.1.2 Empathy awareness;

3.1.3 Conflict resolution skills, and

3.1.4 Positive character traits.

3.2 Personal Responsibility - Students will learn the following:

3.2.1 Problem-solving and accountability;

3.2.2 Increased understanding of how one’s behavior impacts self and others, and

3.2.3 Skills to improve academic success.

3.3 Interpersonal Relations and Personal Safety - Students will learn the following:

3.3.1 To recognize, accept, respect, and appreciate individual differences;

3.3.2 To use effective communication skills including speaking, listening and non-verbal;

3.3.3 How to make and keep friends;

3.3.4 To understand the continuum of bullying behavior;

3.3.5 To differentiate between aggressive, assertive, and passive behaviors;

3.3.6 Coping skills for managing life events, and

3.3.7 Personal safety skills.

4. Counseling Goals (Grades 6-12)

“The contemporary school counseling program is focused on the developmental needs of all students and is an integral component of the school’s instruction program.”  American School Counselor Association

4.1 Academic Development

4.1.1 Students will demonstrate the attitudes, knowledge and skills that contribute to effective learning in school and throughout their lives.

4.1.2 Students will demonstrate the academic skills and planning needed to build an appropriate post-high school plan.

4.1.3 Students will demonstrate the relationship of academics to the world of work and to life at home and in the community.

4.2 Career Development

4.2.1 Students will acquire the skills to investigate the world of work in relation to knowledge of self and to make informed career decisions.

4.2.2 Students will employ strategies to achieve further career success and satisfaction.

4.3 Personal/Social Development

4.3.1 Students will acquire the attitudes, knowledge and interpersonal skills to help them understand and respect self and others.

4.3.2 Students will make decisions, set goals and take necessary action to achieve goals.

4.3.3 Students will demonstrate personal and digital safety and survival skills.


  • Minnesota Board of Social Work
  • American Counselor Association