Stories of Gumption is a regular column that profiles individuals who admirably demonstrate Gumption as we define it. These are the stories of real people who exhibit gumption in overcoming personal challenges, and validate the spirit of Gumption during their journey. Let’s take inspiration from those who seize 100% personal responsibility and show us how to live a life that exhibits Gump-like character traits worthy of applause!
Last week I presented at the Montana School Counselors Association(MSCA) Spring Conference. School counselors have to Function with Gumption to effectively do their job. In many ways, they’re like independent entrepreneurs working within the educational system.
When successful at their jobs, school counselors not only Function with Gumption personally, they also help their primary clients – the kids – learn to Function with Gumption for themselves. That is a big responsibility and an extremely important contribution to society.
Here are a few things I learned about school counselors.
- School Counselors in Montana have a maximum of 400 students for each counselor. The American School Counselor Association recommends a ratio of 250 to 1. California and Arizona both have over 800 to 1 in the 2009-10 U.S. Dept. of Education data. Montana’s average during that same period is just over 300 to 1.
- At risk or underprivileged kids require and receive a lot of attention from school counselors. These kids are the Jennys and Forrests of the world who come from single-parent families, abuse, and/or poverty.
- High achievers are also well served as these kids self-initiate and seek help on college applications and in making good scholastic choices. They are the fun part of being a school counselor
- The kids in the middle are a challenge as they easily fit in and don’t fit the profile of the squeaky wheel gets the grease. I witnessed a real concern and awareness to address the needs of this large group in the middle during my participation at the MSCA Spring Conference.
- School counselors are like independent entrepreneurs in the sense that they have a unique and one-of-a-kind job within a school. They need to work equally well with the other professionals (faculty and administration) as with their clients: the students.
- The MSCA Spring Conference is an opportunity for professionals who work independently within their own school systems to bond with and learn from other like-minded professionals. I found the group to be friendly and generous in their willingness to share ideas and better themselves, their schools, and their professional association. But mostly, they are dedicated to helping kids.
School counselors serve the special need of teaching children to Function with Gumption.
How great is a counselor who helps a child take responsibility for his or her thinking?
How valuable is a counselor who helps a child take responsibility for his or her actions?
How beneficial to our future society is a counselor who helps a child take responsibility for his or her interactions with others?
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Next Blog Date: April 30, 2012